Optimizing buildings systems

Northeastern’s in-house Commissioning department works closely with Design Teams, Contractors and university resources to verify and document that all Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing, Fire Protection, and Building Envelope systems are properly installed, operating, and maintained.  


Additionally, the Commissioning department ensures staff are properly trained in the operation and maintenance of these systems. 

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Commissioning involvement

Pre-Construction (Design)

  • Comply with the Northeastern University Architectural/MEP/FP Design Standards to reflect desired building technology and operational sequences 

  • Attend design review meetings to ensure university standards are followed during design development. 

  • Issue the Commissioning Plan and Commissioning Specifications into the Bid Documents

During Construction

  • Update the Commissioning Plan to include the construction team members and commissioning forms used throughout the construction phase  

  • Outline the Commissioning process through this phase.   

  • Check all MEP/FP systems for proper installation, control and balance in preparation for Functional Performance Testing and Training to identify, track, and issue to the project team to address any installation deficiencies or issues  


  • Collect accurate applicable O&M manuals and As-Builts 

  • Coordinate and witness adequate system training for Northeastern Facility Trades staff  

  • Ensure that all issues identified during construction and Functional Performance Testing are addressed and closed out.   

  • Conduct a 10–12-month warranty review (LEED requirement) after substantial completion to identify any issues that have arisen during this time frame. The review concludes with an assigned corrective action plan to the applicable contractors to address. 

Related Resources

All managers, architects, engineers, and contractors working on Northeastern University construction and renovation projects must familiarize themselves with guidelines containing the technical requirements and standards for mechanical, electrical, and plumbing.  Visit the PREF working with us page for the full list of documents and resources. 

Capital Projects Design Guidelines

Vendors working on Northeastern University construction and renovation projects should use these guidelines to convey the technical requirements and standards for mechanical, electrical, and plumbing.  

MEP Design Standards

Technical requirements and standards related to Mechanical, Engineering, and Plumbing. Technical requirements and standards related to Mechanical, Engineering, and Plumbing. For questions or concerns please contact  

Required Closeout Requirements

This is a guideline for creating and delivering documentation required during the project closeout of a Northeastern University construction and renovation project.

Frequently asked questions

When should the Commissioning Department be notified of a project?

The XXX is responsible for notifying the Commissioning Department; this could be as early as the planning and feasibility study or once the project is assigned to a project manager.   

What is a Commissioning Plan?

A Commissioning Plan is provided for each project and includes the commissioning goals and objectives, general project information, scope of commissioning efforts, project roles and responsibilities, the project directory, communication protocol, and the schedule of commissioning activities with their respective approach.  It will include functional testing procedures, staff training as well as comprehensive pre-functional and functional performance testing criteria of the newly installed equipment.  

What is the role of the Commissioning Agent (CxA)?

    The Commissioning Agent (CxA) is an integral member of the project team. Based on the project schedule, scope, and availability, a CxA is assigned at the beginning of the design phase. Projects seeking LEED certification by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) must include a CxA in the design phase.

    The CxA ensures all MEP/FP systems within the project scope are designed, installed, and perform as intended.  Proper system operation and functionality is accomplished through the development and use of an effective Commissioning Plan.   

    Once the systems are deemed to be installed and functioning per the design intent, the CxA will schedule systems training for the Northeastern University trade personnel.  

    How is training coordinated and conducted?

    System training ensures efficient operation and maintenance. This training is coordinated and led by the CxA, and conducted by manufacturers’ representatives, contractors and/or system designers. Once the project is determined to be substantially complete, the CxA will review the Operations & Maintenance Manuals and As-Built documentation for completeness and develop a Final Commissioning Report.   

    The Northeastern University Trade Operations will receive a copy of the Operations & Maintenance Manuals and As-Built drawings to help maintain the newly installed systems. 

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