NYC landmark goes LEED® Platinum
In 2009, Skanska USA’s flagship office on the 32nd floor of the Empire State Building achieved LEED® CI (Commercial Interiors) Platinum certification, the highest level awarded by the United States Green Building Council, becoming the Empire State Building’s first LEED® certified tenant.
“It shows that you can achieve fantastic results without compromise,” says Anthony E. Malkin, President, Malkin Holdings. “What Skanska and the Empire State Building are doing with moderately increased investment gives significant payback and yield over time. Not just a return of the investment but a return on the investment.”
“They had a vision”
“When Skanska came to us, we were in the planning stages of the Empire State Building rebuilding program. They had a vision. They saw not only what we had done, but what we were doing. Not where we were, but where we were going. And they were able to give us some incredible insights about what to do inside the tenant spaces,” Malkin continues.
The enhanced utility of Skanska’s office space provides exceptional views and day lighting for every employee, as well as a longer lasting work environment.
Skanska achieved LEED® Platinum by combining a host of standard green practices, such as installing low-flow toilets and recycling all tenant and construction debris.
Skanska used renewable materials whenever possible and also significantly reduced energy and water requirements, proving that even an old building can go green at no additional cost over the life of the lease.
“The costs of not being green are not really priced into things right now, so the fact that you can break even on them is great,” says Malkin. “What really proves the economic value is increasing energy efficiency. That’s really the game changer.”
A lot of steps
“If you look at the eight things that we’ve done in terms of energy efficiency, one has a 9 percent impact, and all the rest are 6 percent or below. There’s no one silver bullet. It’s just a lot of incremental steps.”
“There’s about a four-year payback on the Skanska space and there’s a three-year payback for the Empire State Building. But the net present value of the equation is unbelievably positive, to the tune of about 10 percent return of money invested by Skanska. For us it’s even more beneficial because we’re going to own the building for a long time.
“To me it’s all about getting the best economic result, because if you want to change the world, change Wal-Mart. If you want to change how people shop, go to where the money is and deliver people a better bargain. But a truly better bargain, not something that is cheaper, something that is better with a better economic return.
“This has really set the tone for how we deal with tenants when they come into the Empire State Building. We show them the Skanska office. We say, look at what this tenant did and look at what the results are.”
Owner: Malkin Holdings
Area 32nd floor: 2,300 sqm
Environmental rating: LEED Platinum CI (Commercial Interior)
Year of completion: 2008 (originally built in 1931)
Learn more at www.skanska.com/empirestatebuilding.
01. Skanska’s US flagship office, on the 32nd floor of the Empire State Building in New York, has been recognized for its pioneering approach to sustainable practices. The office is now seen as an example of how other tenants can benefit from Skanska’s green initiative.
02. Skanska achieved LEED® Platinum by combining a host of standard green practices, such as installing low-flow toilets and recycling all tenant and construction debris.
03. An office with a view. The office on the 32nd floor of the Empire State Building has windows in four directions. Even if not all the desks are by a window, the light floods in everywhere due to the open plan solution.