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123 Main Street "LEEDs" the Way

Our own building in White Plains is a good example of the how energy-efficiency improvements can translate into substantial savings. In 2003, we completed $3.8 million worth of energy-efficiency upgrades at our Clarence D. Rappleyea Building at 123 Main Street, reducing the building’s energy use by 50 percent. A major share of the energy savings was achieved by replacing the building's 21-year-old chilled-water plant, which produced cool air for air conditioning. In addition to mitigating the use of ozone depleting refrigerants, the new chillers lowered the building's annual electricity consumption by 2.6 million kilowatt-hours (kwh), more than half the total savings of 5 million kwh.

With those improvements under our belt, in 2006 we embarked on an ambitious program to place our building among the ranks of the healthiest, most energy-efficient and most environmentally sound buildings in the nation, by pursuing a checklist of modifications and activities to earn certification from the United States Green Building Council.

A team of NYPA energy services and facilities management professionals adapted a wide range of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standard building alterations into the structure of our then 25-year old administrative office facility. Beyond reducing energy and water use, LEED standards award points for maximizing the amount of recycled waste; storm water management; improvements in indoor and outdoor air quality; increased use of recycled materials; employing “green” cleaning products that are biodegradable and low in toxicity; reducing upward-directed exterior lighting to cut “light pollution;” and encouraging use of public transportation and car-pooling.

In early 2007, our White Plains office received a prestigious Gold-EB (Existing Building) designation under the USGBC's LEED recognition program. In April 2013, the project was recertified, making the building one of only 26 LEED projects in the country that have gone through the renewal process for maintaining LEED credentials.

Installation of a new chilled water plant was part of a major energy efficiency project at NYPA's Rappleyea building in 2003. More than half of the building's energy savings came from installation of the chillers,

Photo of chilled water plant

Through experiences with our own building and training programs sponsored by the U.S. Green Building Council, we are developing an expertise in meeting a broad array of LEED specifications and implementation standards.

Named for a former NYPA chairman, the 17-story Rappleyea building houses about 600 NYPA employees, plus other tenants.