WBDG User's Guide

Part 1 Introduction

This tutorial is part of the WBDG User's Guide describing the development of the Web site and the information available within its pages. Follow along below as a narrator discusses a particular aspect of the WBDG.org. A transcript can be viewed by clicking on the 'View Transcript' link below the User Guide navigation. Click on the arrow in the image below to begin.

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Welcome to the WBDG User's Guide. This series of tutorials is designed to introduce you to the WBDG Web site and provide instruction on navigating this online technical resource. You may pause a tutorial at any time by rolling over this window and clicking on the pause button ( || ). You may also skip to the next tutorial at any time by clicking on the 'Next' link below the window or replaying a previous tutorial by clicking on the 'Previous' link. Let's get started.

Conceived in 1997 by the NAVFAC Criteria Office in collaboration with the Sustainable Buildings Industry Council, the WBDG was created to assist the design community with integrating government criteria, non-government standards, vendor data, and expert knowledge into a 'whole building' perspective. This 'whole building' concept is an integrated design approach that employs a collaborative team process to achieve high-performance buildings. Since its inception, the WBDG has grown from a handful of pages to a site with thousands of pages visited by over 250,000 users per month.

The WBDG is managed by the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) in Washington, DC while overall development is guided by a Board of Direction and Advisory Committee, consisting mostly of the Federal agencies involved in facility design and construction. Content of the WBDG is a collaborative effort among federal agencies, private sector companies, nonprofit organizations and educational institutions. Its success is based on industry and government experts contributing their knowledge and experience to better serve the building community.

Let's take a look at the organization of the WBDG. From the main navigation, you can see that the the site is currently organized into eight major categories — Design Guidance, Project Management, Operations and Maintenance, Documents and References, Tools, Continuing Education, Building Information Modeling and Applied Research.

The WBDG also sits atop the Construction Criteria Base, a library containing over 12,000 documents, including criteria, standards, and tools. It is the primary criteria distribution system for the federal agencies who have major capital projects.

Similar to an encyclopedia, the WBDG is reductive in nature. But unlike an encyclopedia, it directs you to additional relevant information by linking you to other resources available on the Internet. Taking advantage of a web-based format, information within the WBDG is presented so that you, as a designer, project manager, building owner or client, are able to understand the complexities and interrelationships of the different design objectives. This way, you can consider them in concert with each other to achieve quality, successful, high-performance building projects.