Retrofit Chicago Recognizes Commercial Building Energy Efficiency Champions
From the board room to the boiler room, last night's Retrofit Chicago's Commercial Buildings Initiative Energy Efficiency Awards Ceremony was all about recognizing the people who are improving the energy performance of buildings across Chicago. The program's second ever awards ceremony saw real estate professionals, engineers, consultants, nonprofit partners and utility representatives come together to celebrate the progress of the Commercial Buildings Initiative and recognize the buildings and individuals who are leaders in improving building energy performance.
Here in Chicago, we have reached a milestone in tackling energy waste in the built environment. In 2015, participation in Retrofit Chicago's Commercial Buildings Initiative topped 50 participating buildings and nearly 40 million square feet that have committed to improving the energy efficiency of their buildings 20 percent within five years.
We're proud to announce that last night, a new building was welcomed by Chicago's Chief Sustainability Officer Karen Weigert into the ranks of the Mayor's Leadership Circle: 125 South Wacker Drive. The high performing building, managed by JLL and owned by Metropolitan Life, reduced its whole-building energy use by more than 20% below their program baseline in less than three years. This is a great achievement and a testament to the dedication of the engineering, management, and ownership teams.
Other awards highlighted the extraordinary work of the people who are champions of energy efficiency in their facilities, who lead the way in identifying and achieving energy savings:
- Most Valuable Engineer Award, in recognition of a Retrofit Chicago engineer who has gone above-and-beyond in identifying and achieving energy savings through efficient building operations at his or her facility: Lawrence Lang, Chief Engineer at 224 South Michigan Avenue.
- Most Valuable Property Manager Award, in recognition of a property manager or management team member who exemplifies how and why energy efficiency is critical to excellent property management: Myrna E. Coronado-Brookover, Senior Vice President & General Manager at 77 West Wacker Drive.
- Innovative Energy Efficiency Partnership Award, in recognition of a project, program, or partnership that has demonstrated innovative, impactful, and replicable energy savings: Hispanic Housing Development Corporation, Affordable Community Energy, Tropic Construction, dbMS, and eConserve for the comprehensive retrofit of Continental Plaza at 1330 West 76th Street.
Retrofit Chicago is one of the biggest and most impactful voluntary energy efficiency challenge programs in the country, and NRDC is proud to have been a partner of the Commercial Buildings Initiative from day one, delivering important technical support and organization. We are excited to take the lessons learned from the successes in Chicago and share them with other cities that are looking to advance practical solutions to improving the energy efficiency of buildings through our work on the City Energy Project.
We are grateful to all of Retrofit Chicago's nonprofit, business, technical, and utility partners and to the 50 participating buildings for making the commitment to improving the energy efficiency which undoubtedly cuts energy waste, reduces harmful pollution, and makes our city a healthier, more prosperous place to live and work.
Photo by Lauren Zullo features Chicago's Chief Sustainability Officer Karen Weigert and Mayor's Leadership Circle award winners from 125 South Wacker Drive.