For my building, I put plenty of curtain walls so that it lets in a lot of light. However, to combat the high level of radiation coming in from the sun, I would likely have to use triple pane low e glass to maximize the reflection off the sun and minimize the heat coming in. This way, my building won't overheat in the California weather — since it's going to be sunny most of the time, I need to make sure that my building doesn't overheat.
All of the outer walls in my analysis are glass panels and all the interior walls were set as Basic Wall Interior - 6 1/8 partition (2-hr). After running exploring Insight on my model, I could see that most of my improvements would likely come from an efficient HVAC system, reflectivity of windows, plug load efficiency, PV generation. I picked VAV high efficiency for air circulation only and heat pump for heating. The wall controls (changing the materials of the interior walls) don't actually do anything for me (I think because the climate isn't too challenging in Northern California — so I'll leave that alone and play around with the rest of the model. All interior wall R values are 21.5.
I changed the glass panels to Triple Glazing - 1/4 inch thick glass with e = 0.05, R 3.7 to ensure my building doesn't overheat. Under the HVAC tab, the heat pump seems to be the most effective option so later when I design my HVAC system, I'll be sure to use one of those systems.
Running a daylighting analysis shows quite good results. For each floor, see the screenshots of the plans below. I don't need a skylight anymore as I previously anticipated because my building already gets enough light. I also specifically designed the stairs so that they'd be close to the curtain walls and the ambient light will make people want to take the stairs. The main stairwell in the center of the building extends out and overlooks the big open space in the center of the building.
The building energy requirements seemed pretty decent from the very beginning which I'm happy about. By implementing some of these strategies, I can effectively hit the Architecture 2030 benchmark if I have enough solar panels on the roof which is quite exciting.
The East side of the building will be pretty bright in the morning at 9 am but I don't think that'll be too big of a problem given that it's usually pretty chilly in the morning. If there's plenty of light, it should be nice in the morning. As for the afternoon, the cafe seating area will be well lit without being too hot (which is nice because the afternoon is usually the hottest part of the day). We can always put umbrellas or shades out on the terrace so that the people eating outside are shaded.
The main rooms that need lighting are just the restrooms and 2 of the exhibition rooms. I think it won't be too bad though because my doors are set to be door openings and when people go into those exhibition rooms, they can still peer a little bit into the other rooms to see how much sunlight is coming in - I think that will help the visitors feel a bit more open and not too cramped.
At 9 am:
At 3 pm: