There’s a reason SL Green won the 2016
IREM REME Award for Sustainability,
and it’s the same reason they’ve been named
one of the greenest businesses in the U.S. by
Newsweek magazine three years running. As
the city’s largest commercial landlord, SL
Green is responsible for implementing sustainability best practices, operating at the
highest efficiency standards, strengthening their community’s resiliency and thus
transforming the performance of New York
City’s commercial buildings. Nowhere was
this demonstrated more clearly than in
their REME Award-winning initiative.
STRENGTH IN TEAMWORK
When Viacom International renewed
their lease with SL Green for space at 1515
Broadway, the commitment to sustainability made by both companies’ executive
teams resulted in a winning partnership
that spawned over 17 efficiency initiatives
and maximized sustainability performance.
The inspiration for this project was twofold. First, Viacom’s employee population
expresses sustainability as a top priority,
so it was critical that the renovation reflect
these values. Second, SL Green has a corporate culture of integrating sustainability
into all operational decisions and policies.
Ellen Albert, executive vice president
of core services for Viacom, stated: “As a
fundamental value embodied by Viacom’s
executive team and employees, we worked
closely with SL Green to push the bound-
aries beyond industry standards for office
sustainability. We are proud that our headquarters epitomize paramount efficiency in the
USING NATURE TO THEIR ADVANTAGE
Implementing cutting-edge technology was a critical step in rolling out the sustainability
program. Of all of the initiatives implemented, the most unique was the terrace garden. It
helps reduce New York’s heat island effect by removing heat from the air through evapotranspiration, lowering temperatures of the roof surface and surrounding air. Moreover,
the produce grown there is used in Viacom’s on-site cafeteria, greatly reducing the company’s carbon footprint. Unconsumed food is composted.
Since the implementation of the building’s energy-efficiency retrofit, $1.3 million in annual
utility and $3 million in overall savings were realized. From project start to completion,
the space saw an energy reduction of 15 percent. Energy use is expected to drop another 5
percent as all of the efficiency measures become fully operational and Viacom continues its
commitment to building upgrades.
“The partnership between ourselves and Viacom has created a transformative sustainability program that optimizes operational efficiency, results in substantial energy savings
and fosters meaningful employee engagement. We are committed to maintaining industry
leadership to benefit New York, our tenants and stakeholders. Our approach to sustainability will continue to conserve finite resources, incorporate citywide initiatives and uphold
responsibility to our community and future generations,” said Elizabeth Majkowski, CPM,
SL Green director of sustainability and senior vice president of operations.
The key takeaway from SL Green’s sustainability initiative is the effectiveness of
tenant-landlord collaboration in project implementation and execution. Sustainability is
not only a way to improve the bottom line and attract investors, but is now a tenant expectation and a social responsibility. “The retrofit of 1515 is an example of how to do
tenant-driven retrofits right. When a new generation of workers calls for a sustainable work
environment and the landlord throws in their full support, big things can happen,” said
Byron Cotton, senior vice president of core services for Viacom.
NEW YORK CITY
SL Green Realty
< Evin Epstein
SL Green at
IREM’s 2016 Fall
Conference in San