The Main Street Building
100 Main Street
Anytown, US 01234
The Main Building in downtown Anytown, USA is a 12-story
commercial office building whose tenants include, among others,
doctors' practices, corporate offices, and administrative workspaces.
The building, constructed in 1995, is owned by ABC Properties Fund and
managed by DEF Property Management. Recognizing the potential to
improve The Main Building's energy and financial performance, DEF
turned to the proven strategy of EPA's ENERGY STAR program in 2002
for the tools and resources necessary to help achieve superior energy
By working with ENERGY STAR to make The Main Building more energy efficient, DEF Property Management is saving the building's owners about $50,000 per year in energy costs.
As a first step, the DEF energy management team sought to assess The Main Building's baseline energy performance and to pursue the efficiency gains that could be accomplished through improved operations and maintenance and other low-cost practices. Initial benchmarking in 2002 using the ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager tool returned a baseline rating of 63 — above the national average, but still not high enough to earn the ENERGY STAR label. The team was able to leverage utility incentives in order to conduct a whole building retro-commissioning survey — a process that revealed a number of significant (but simple) operational changes that resulted in rapid savings. For instance, the team reviewed the property's EMS settings in order to ensure that the building automation reflected the actual needs of the tenants. Through this process, it was discovered that the building's HVAC systems were being turned on for five hours each Saturday, even though the tenant that had originally requested this service had long since moved out of the building! A simple re-programming of the system eliminated the unneeded energy consumption, resulting in an immediate whole-building energy reduction of 2% in 2003. Furthermore, the implementation of a regular preventive maintenance program (including HVAC filter replacement, optimized HVAC scheduling, damper adjustment, and seasonal thermostat recalibration), is expected to save an additional 7-10% in annual energy consumption as compared to "business as usual" — all while taking place within the context of the building staff's regular O&M responsibilities.
Based on the cost savings realized through the retro-commissioning process, DEF was able to obtain ABC's approval to undertake a whole -building lighting retrofit. This process involved the replacement of T-12 fluorescent tubes with more energy-efficient T-8s, and the installation of electronic ballasts in place of the older magnetic ballasts. In addition, occupancy sensors were installed in common areas and all private offices. Bundled together, these lighting measures resulted in whole building energy savings of 10%, and the retrofit will pay itself back within 3 years. Furthermore, to reduce building heat gain from direct sunlight, window films were installed on the south and west sides of the building.
In addition to the direct energy savings that have been realized at The Main Building, the property's cooling load was also reduced significantly. In fact, when it came time to replace the chillers in 2005, it was realized that smaller units would be sufficient to meet the building's reduced cooling needs. In addition to the reduced first cost of this upgrade, the installation of high-efficiency chillers, variable speed drives on pumps and fans, and premium efficiency motors will help the building to achieve continuously high energy performance.
In 2004, only two years after its initial benchmarking, The Main Building earned the ENERGY STAR by achieving a 76 baseline rating in Portfolio Manager. In 2005 and 2006, the building scored an 84 and 89 respectively. This dramatic increase in energy efficiency translates into real savings for The Main Building's owners: In the past five years, the ABC Properties Fund has saved about $250,000 in energy costs. The company is already reinvesting those dollars in improvements to The Main Building's infrastructure to ensure continued high energy performance and maximum tenant comfort.
The Main Building's owners and managers are also reaching out to employees and tenants in order to spread the word that energy efficiency is good for the bottom line as well as good for the environment. Each year, ABC Properties Fund and DEF Property Management hold an environmental fair at The Main Building for company employees and building tenants. The event features dozens of demonstrations on being more environmentally responsible at home and at work.
In 2007, our energy awareness activities included Earth Day activities for employees and community members; an Energy Awareness Month building tour by city and county government officials to see the various energy upgrades that had implemented. The mayor is preparing to display the ENERGY STAR plaque in the building's lobby.
"We continually strive to find new ways to reduce energy use by either replacing inefficient equipment or finding ways for existing equipment to run more efficiently. Through monthly monitoring, reporting and comparisons to historical energy data, we strive to ensure that The Main Building runs at high efficiency and is eligible to earn the ENERGY STAR each year." -- Joe Energy, Director of Facility Services, DEF Property Management
Please note: Narrative information in this profile has been provided by Arden Realty, Inc. 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.