Empire State Building Tenant Li & Fung USA Shows How Cooperation Can Save Energy

By Wendy Fok  
OTHER PARTS OF THIS ARTICLEPt. 1: Energy Consumption In Tenant Space Offers Potential For Big SavingsPt. 2: This PagePt. 3: Energy Efficiency In Tenant Spaces Should Be Focus At Lease, Expansion And Renewal StagesPt. 4: Demand For Energy Efficiency In Buildings Brings New Resources For Tenants

Li & Fung USA, a tenant of the Empire State Building, is a prime example of how cooperation between tenants and management can save energy. Over the past four years, a number of major energy-efficiency projects have transformed the building; Li & Fung USA is taking advantage of those efficiency improvements to bolster its own energy-saving efforts.

The tenant energy optimization process targets 30 to 50 percent energy use savings compared to a standard code-compliant space, using a set of energy savings measures to collectively provide a strong payback period of three to five years on incremental costs of $1 to $3 per square foot.

The first live demonstration project — LFUSA (a subsidiary of Li & Fung Limited) — showcases how to execute the energy value analysis process and implement a set of cost effective energy performance measures. LFUSA selected the Empire State Building to meet more than 400,000 square feet of expansion-space needs in a 15-year lease term. The company is undertaking a wide range of efficiency measures in the build-out, including design reviews and sub-metered tenant energy management platform.

As part of the tenant's design process, CMI identified packages of short- and medium-term payback measures: high-efficiency lighting, daylight dimming controls, plug load switch control, and cooling/ventilation optimization in alignment with lease requirements.

Top tenant leadership must share the energy performance goals with everyone involved in the project to keep the team focused on integrating efficiency into the first design and operations planning. LFUSA executives emphasized energy reduction goals to the project management, design, and facilities team. The result is a space that is projected to perform better than 30 percent above code requirements with an estimated payback of 3.4 years. (See chart below.)

The Better Business Case

More compelling than a standalone high-performance tenant space is the case for such a space located in a high-performance building. In other words, a building that has already made its common areas and central systems more efficient can build on that progress by next addressing its leased tenant space. In addition, property managers that offer submetered spaces, energy aligned lease clauses, energy-efficient design guidelines, tenant energy management, and advisory resources make it easier for tenants to optimize energy performance early in design and operationally over the occupancy term.

Analyzing multiple sets of energy performance measures allows the tenant to make intelligent decisions while considering aesthetic and operational factors. Looking at tenant project cases through annual, lease term, and multiple investment frameworks can spark a discussion between managers and occupants to set energy savings targets in the space planning stage.


LFUSA build-out (nine floors) in Empire State Building: projected energy savings and returns

Leased Premises 412,200 sq. ft.
Modeled Energy Reduction 31 percent
Total Projected Electricity Savings Over Lease Term 10,519,320 kWh
Incremental Implementation Cost (w/o incentives) $511,110
State Incentives (net of review and filing costs) $124,876
Energy Modeling Soft Cost $19,800
Adjusted Incremental Implementation Cost $406,034 ($0.99/ sq. ft.)
Total Projected Electricity Cost Savings over Lease Term $1,813,733
Present Value of Projected Electricity Cost Savings over Lease Term $1,255,062
Net Present Value of Project Investment $849,028
Return on Investment (ROI) over Lease Term 209 percent
Annual Rate of Return 29 percent
Payback Period 3.4 years

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  posted on 7/15/2013   Article Use Policy

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