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ENERGY STAR Labeled Building Profile

First Parish in Needham
23 Dedham Avenue
Needham, MA 02492
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First Parish in Needham , MA, Unitarian Universalist, is the first house of worship in Massachusetts to receive the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's prestigious ENERGY STAR, the national symbol for protecting the environment through superior energy efficiency. First Parish earned a score  of 94 on EPA's 1-100 Energy Performance Scale.  

Co-founded with the town in 1711, First Parish is Needham' s oldest religious community. Its current meeting house was built in 1836 and is the oldest public building in Needham . In 2007-8, the church was completely renovated, with added meeting space and classrooms, which created a larger, more useful and environmentally progressive house of worship.

The renovated 15,000-square-foot building, which is 25 percent larger than the old, contains a beautiful and spacious meeting hall, offices, classrooms, and historic sanctuary.   Despite its larger size and the addition of air conditioning, the new building has reduced First Parish's utility costs 50 percent and its carbon footprint 43 percent based on actual utility bills.   Through this achievement, the church has shown our commitment to environmental stewardship while also lowering our energy costs.

Elements that contribute to the building's energy efficiency include:

First Parish's commitment to the environment is also shown in its use of materials, such as maple flooring harvested from sustainable forests certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, and paints, carpets, furniture, and other materials chosen for their environmental friendliness. The building is also pre-wired and piped to accommodate a five-kilowatt solar photovoltaic system on the roof to generate electricity. This final addition will mark the completion of the greening of First Parish.


Item                                       Old First Parish                  New First Parish              Reduction

Heat Energy                        62,152 BTU/SF/Yr              17,867 BTU/SF/Yr               72%

Electric Energy                    19,754 BTU/SF/Yr              28,857 BTU/SF/Yr             -46%

Total Energy                        81,906 BTU/SF/Yr              46,724 BTU/SF/Yr             43%

Water Consumption            184,756 Gallons                   90,508 Gallons/Yr               51%

Greenhouse Gas                11.6 #CO2/SF/Yr                     5.3 #CO2/SF/Yr                54%

Utility Costs                         $1.66/SF/Yr                          $0.81/SF/Yr                    51%





Please note: Narrative information in this profile has been provided by First Parish in Needham 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:*
First Parish in Needham

Property Manager:*

Year(s) Labeled (Rating):
2010 (94)
2011 (95)
2014 (98)

Facility Type: Worship Facility

Total Floorspace: 15659 sf

Year Constructed: 1836

Contract Type: None

Technologies Used: