Energy Conservation Opportunities, Passive Strategies, and the State of Downtown

Almost 50 Pittsburgh 2030 District Partners convened at the iconic One PPG Place to dig into topics of critical importance to the economic vitality and future of Pittsburgh, with detailed information on methodologies for opportunity discovery, passive strategies, and the State of Downtown Pittsburgh.

Hosted by Highwoods Properties, the May 24th Partner Meeting provided a wealth of information for attendees, followed by a surprise rooftop and mechanical room tour.


What We Learned

  • Terry Kennedy from Highwoods Properties, and John Greenwald from MOC Inc., shared their process for identifying, implementing, and monitoring energy conservation opportunities. In addition to regular committee meetings, John highly encourages input from building occupants, including janitorial and security staff, noting that building occupants are keenly aware of inefficiencies in a building. In his case, the night cleaning crew alerted him to a draft in the lobby caused by the revolving door drainage grate. John has found that correcting many little issues adds up to big savings.
  • IMG_5067MOC’s energy approach categorizes opportunities into 7 categories: Operational, HVAC equipment, lighting, distribution, domestic water, building envelope and power distribution. Using these categories, they further divide opportunities into immediate and long-term implementation, taking care to look at the science behind the opportunity and estimating the cost and payback period. One energy conservation opportunity was implemented by upgrading to a magnetic bearing chiller, using site energy more efficiently and reducing costs associated with oil maintenance.
  • Rob Hosken, of Building Performance Architecture, shared highlights from the recent Race to Zero Energy Series: Passive Strategies event, showing how deep energy retrofits in building performance and comfort become a source of profit, reducing energy use and utility costs and increasing revenues in the form of higher rental income and reduced vacancy rates.
    Interested in learning more about getting to zero energy? Join us on June 23 to hear about Technologies and Products: Enabling Building Performance.
  • Brian Kurtz, of Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, summarized the 2016 State of Downtown Pittsburgh. With $3.1 billion in total active and announced investment, including proposed pipelines of an additional 302,100 square feet of retail, 3,416 residential units, 1.9 million square feet of office space, and 1,535 hotel rooms.

Each month, the Pittsburgh 2030 District holds a Partner Meeting convening Property Partners, Community and Resource Partners, sponsors and other stakeholders to discuss the latest relevant happenings and information for the city. Meetings are held in a different location within the District’s two boundaries, Downtown and Oakland, giving building owners and facility managers the opportunity to share their successes and challenges. Additional speakers present industry information and updates on a variety of critical topics. It’s a closed-door, monthly forum where partners learn from each other with peer-to-peer dialogue and plan collaboratively for a sustainable and efficient future.

The Pittsburgh 2030 District’s goal is to have 100% property participation in the District’s Downtown and Oakland boundaries. Join us! Visit our FAQs for more program information and our contact page with questions.

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