MARE journal.com

Mid Atlantic Real Estate Journal — January 27 - February 9, 2012 — 5A


MARE journal.com

Mid Atlantic Real Estate Journal — January 27 - February 9, 2012 — 5A

OLUMBIA, MD—Lib- erty Property Trust today announced it has Also ranked in the top three among 64 Liberty Property Trust earns Energy Star Cert. C

By Mike Mumper, High Construction If LEED is green, Why am I operating in the Red?

When building owners and developers think about sus- tainability and saving en-

simply having a commission- ing plan and providing the resulting documentation, not necessarily from acting on any of the findings. The NBI study does indicate that projects that achieved LEED points for performance measurement showed better energy performance than the average sample group as a whole. Performance measure- ment provides the ability for system performance monitor- ing on an ongoing basis. Sug- gested changes in the LEED process for 2012 continue to emphasize these options. How- ever, without involvement from the building operator, simply having the ability to monitor performance does little, if no one is actually monitoring or knows what to look for. Does this mean that LEED design and certification pro- vides no value? Absolutely not. The LEED process addresses the sustainable aspects of the building process. Owners of LEED buildings have been rewarded for use of building sites that would have otherwise been considered unsuitable. Similarly, local sourcing of building materials has reduced the carbon footprint of the building process itself. Water conservation and recycling are also significant pieces of the process as well. However, what may gain points on a LEED score card may not be the right solu- tion for your building. More- over, simply choosing LEED as means of showing environmen- tal stewardship can provide mixed long-term performance results. Following these tips will help to assure that you get the maximum benefit from the LEED process: • Stay involved in the process to understand the basics of the design • Engage an owner’s repre- sentative that understands building operation, building performance, and building construction • Use the knowledge gained from the first two steps to es- tablish criteria for monitoring your building’s performance so you will know, in real time, continued on page 6A

ergy in new construction, t h e y t y p i - cally think LEED. The US G r e e n B u i l d i n g Council de- veloped this certification

added Energy Star certifica- tion at a sixth building in it Maryland region, the 71st in its national portfolio. The office building is located at 9770 Patuxent Woods Drive in Columbia. “Our experience has been that Energy Star buildings are saving on average more than a third of energy costs when compared to traditional buildings, and these are sav- ings that pass directly to our tenants when they pay their energy bills,” said Lisa Sul- livan, vice president and city manager, Liberty Property Trust. “We remain focused on proactively managing energy efficiency and are working to certify as many of our build- ings as possible.” Five Liberty buildings in Maryland were Energy Star recertified earlier this year. These include 4 North Park Drive (North Park Business Community) and 307 Interna- tional Circle (Longview Busi- ness Center,) both in Hunt Valley, and 6220 and 6230 Old Dobbin Lane (Columbia Cross- ing) and 9755 Patuxent Woods Drive (Patuxent Woods Busi- ness Center) in Columbia. Across the nation, Liberty has received Energy Star cer- tification for 71 buildings in 14 regions from Philadelphia to Florida, Illinois to Arizona. Buildings are measured on a points system that consid- ers energy use, location, size, weather patterns and sev- eral operating characteristics. Those that receive a score of 75 points or more (out of 100) are honored with the designa- tion. Energy Star was introduced in 1992 as a voluntary, mar- ket-based partnership to re- duce air pollution through increased energy efficiency. Today, in partnership with the Department of Energy, the program offers businesses and consumers efficient solutions to save energy, money and help protect the environment for future generations. More than 17,000 organizations have be-

Mike Mumper

process to provide indepen- dent, third-party verification that a building is designed and built using strategies aimed at achieving high performance in key areas of human and environmental health: sustain- able site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality. It would stand to reason that a project certified by the USGBC LEED program would achieve maximum energy per- formance. But, the two are not necessarily mutually in- clusive. A study conducted a few years ago by New Buildings Institute (NBI), White Salmon, WA, showed that about half of the projects certified by the USGBC LEED program that were included in the study did not meet EPA-certified ENERGY STAR certification criteria. ENERGY STAR scores are used to assess a building’s energy performance, and are based upon building type, size, and a minimum of one year of energy use data. Essentially, more effort is needed to ensure life-cycle cost benefits in the form of energy savings and reduced operating costs. The key to energy savings comes through a building operator ’s involvement in the design process and then ensuring that what was de- signed is actually installed and functional. LEED attempts to address this issue via ad- ditional points for enhanced building commissioning (a process which is intended to provide system testing). But, similar to energy conservation points being awarded based on design elements, commission- ing points may be obtained by

9770 Patuxent Woods in Columbia, MD

come Energy Star partners. MALVERN, PA — For the second year in a row, Liberty Property Trust has ranked in the top three among 64 North and SouthAmerica-based com- mercial real estate companies and funds for its environmen- tal and social performance. The international study – “GRESB 2011 Research Re- port” – was completed by the GRESB Foundation (Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark). The GRESB study ranks commercial real estate com- panies and funds in North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia in the areas of Management, Policy & Dis- closure, Strategy & Analysis, Monitoring & Environmental Management Systems, Perfor- mance Indicators, Certifica- tion, and Social Factors. Equally important, Liberty placed in the top 19% among the340 real estate companies surveyed globally, to qualify for the top honor of being rec- ognized as a GRESB “Green Star.” “The GRESB report is impor- tant not only because it helps us understand how our current sustainable practices measure up, but it also provides a tool that helps us identify the areas where we can make ad- ditional improvements,” said Marla Thalheimer, Liberty’s manager of sustainability. “We are committed to achiev- ing a sustainable and high performance portfolio that provides extraordinary work environments for our tenants and this report is a valuable

resource to help us achieve success.” Liberty Property Trust was one of the earliest adopt- ers of commercial real es- tate sustainable design and property management. The company began developing its first project, a LEED Gold certified office building in Al- lentown, Pennsylvania (now known as The Plaza at PPL) in 2001. Since then Liberty has invested more than $1.5 billion in 43 USGBC LEED registered and/or certified sustainable office and indus- trial buildings, including the 975’ foot high Comcast Center, one of the tallest green build- ings in the United States, and the Philadelphia Navy Yard, the only commercial park to include seven LEED regis- tered and certified buildings, earning Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum certifications from the US Green Building Council. In the last two years the developer has also received 79 Energy Star certifications for buildings in 14 states. Focusing on Energy Savings A major focus of Liberty’s sustainability program is en- ergy efficiency. In addition to the environmental benefits, it is important to the com- pany to help its tenants save money and keep its operating expenses as low as possible. Liberty benchmarks energy use in 100%of its managed buildings using Energy Star Portfolio Manager, and also helps control electric costs us- ing the company’s innovative

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