Iconic U.S. Steel Tower earns Energy Star certification

Iconic U.S. Steel Tower earns Energy Star certification

Photo courtesy of Winthrop Management

Built in 1970, the 64-story U.S. Steel Tower in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh ranks as the seventh largest high-rise office building in the U.S. by square footage. Through a series of retrofits to improve its energy efficiency, the iconic skyscraper recently achieved ENERGY STAR certification, according to Facility Executive.

“In the past decade, Pittsburgh has become known worldwide as an innovative, sustainable community that is focused on efficiency and performance,” County Executive Rich Fitzgerald said. “(This) announcement adds the U.S. Steel Tower to the list of properties, buildings, facilities and spaces that are focused upon reflecting those characteristics.”

In 2013, Winthrop Management signed the U.S. Steel Tower on to the Pittsburgh 2030 District challenge, a public-private partnership to create a high-performance and energy-efficient building district in downtown Pittsburgh by the year 2030. As part of this challenge, businesses are committing to reduce energy usage to 50 percent below the national average over the next 13 years.

“The U.S. Steel Tower has been a strong Pittsburgh 2030 District Property Partner, actively leading the way for 483 other committed buildings in working towards measurable energy, water and transportation emissions reductions of 50 percent below baselines by the year 2030,” said Angelica Ciranni, the Green Building Alliance’s Pittsburgh 2030 district director. “Quick to share innovative approaches and lessons learned, the U.S. Steel Tower’s property management, facilities staff, and tenants have worked as a team over many years to achieve an ENERGY STAR designation for one of Pittsburgh’s most iconic buildings that demonstrates the region’s leadership in energy conservation.”

With the help of evolveEA, Winthrop Management’s energy efficiency initiatives include:

Installation of highly efficient LEDs in the building’s lobbies and new lighting in the garage.

Lighting: Installation of highly efficient LEDs in the building’s lobbies and new lighting in the garage.

VFDs and HVAC upgrades: Variable frequency drives and state-of-the-art HVAC technologies.

Elevator upgrades: A new energy efficient elevator system.

Tenant engagement: Winthrop and evolveEA collaborated with building tenants to establish a sustainability committee that teaches and encourages eco-friendly behavior among occupants while measuring effectiveness.

Measures to save energy were first channeled toward achieving certification under a program of the Building Owners and Managers Association and were subsequently leveraged toward achieving ENERGY STAR certification. From a 2010 baseline, the U.S. Steel Tower reduced its energy use by 28.5 percent from 67,397,908 kWh to 48,226,200 kWh, while building occupancy rose from 78 percent in 2009 to 98 percent in 2013.


Topics: Architectural Firms, Building Owners and Managers, Certifications, Construction Firms, Energy Saving Products, ENERGY STAR, HVAC - Heating, Cooling, and Ventilation, Lighting - Energy Efficient Lighting, Office Buildings, Sustainable Communities, Ventilation

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