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ENERGY STAR Labeled Building Profile

Independence Plaza
1050 17th St.
Denver, CO 80265
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Independence Plaza is a 716,000 GSF (gross-square-foot) Class A office building with a 332,000-square-foot parking garage in downtown Denver Central Business District. The property is owned by Independence Plaza Investment Group, Inc. and, as of November 2009, managed by Jones Lang LaSalle. The lobby opens onto both Seventeenth Street and the Sixteenth Street Mall with a 20,000-square-foot plaza. The building offers a variety of retail amenities including several restaurants, sundries, baking, copy center, mail services, dental, and hair salon. Tenants enjoy excellent thermal comfort and indoor air quality with above average illumination throughout the building.


Independence Plaza has made significant strides in revitalizing this more than 30-year-old project. A complete lobby, common area, and elevator renovation has been completed, in addition to replacing all inefficient equipment in the building. The Independence Plaza success in competing with newer buildings in the market is in large part a result of moving from one of the biggest power consuming buildings in Denver to one of the most efficient.


Investments in efficiency include:


-- Completing an elevator modernization project, including installing computerized control and replacing the motor-generator with variable speed drives. This retrofit dispatches elevators much more efficiently and reduces power consumption by 45 percent.


-- Replacing the original steam absorption chillers with new ultra high efficiency York chillers. These new chillers use the oversized cooling towers in place to produce chilled water at an average rate of .38 Kilowatts per ton. At outside air temperatures up to 70 degrees, a plate and frame type heat exchanger provides free cooling.


-- Retrofitting all lights using T8 technology with a two-lamp reflector system to maintain lighting levels while reducing power consumption by more than 350 Kilowatts. Variable speed drives have been installed on major fan systems and cooling towers. 


-- Installing a new CSI energy management system, which was a major piece of the energy puzzle in the quest to reduce energy consumption and increase tenant comfort. This system utilizes new control strategies that optimize all HVAC equipment. The engineering team is constantly reviewing these strategies and changing them as necessary to assure that optimum performance does not interfere with tenant comfort.


-- Replacing the original aluminum electrical bus duct with a reliable engineered copper bus duct and 3,000 amp bolted pressure switch. High speed roll up doors were installed for the heated parking garage, which has decreased the steam energy usage. Also, the old inefficient domestic water pumping system was replaced with a highly efficient system with variable frequency drives (VFDs).

These investments reduced energy costs in the first year by more than $376,000, and in recent years the annual savings have been more than $600,000. The on-site management team continues to look for more efficient ways to operate the 3-building complex.  





Please note: Narrative information in this profile has been provided by Alaska Permanent Fund or a representative of this facility. Other building information was verified and submitted to EPA at the time of application. Building energy performance, operating characteristics, and ownership/management may be subject to change over time.

Building Owner:*
Alaska Permanent Fund

Property Manager:*

Year(s) Labeled (Rating):
1999 (96)
2002 (80)
2003 (85)
2004 (99)
2005 (96)
2007 (90)
2008 (80)
2009 (84)
2010 (91)
2011 (95)
2012 (94)
2013 (80)
2014 (76)

Facility Type: Office

Total Floorspace: 501705 sf

Year Constructed: 1972

Contract Type: Internal Resources

Technologies Used:
   Stage 2-Lighting