An Iconic Building Gets Energy Efficient

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Constructed from 1929-1931 (and renovated in 1933 to repair damage from the giant ape incident), the Empire State Building has long held the fascination of the American public as an iconic symbol of the country’s rise in the 20th century. And while it still looks as beautiful today as it did upon completion, it was time for some upgrades.

Inefficient use can result in higher operating costs, so a tune-up was in order. Yes, even a classic needs a check under the hood and some regular TLC to make sure it keeps running smoothly.

About a year ago, the owners of the Empire State Building completed a series of retrofits to bring the 1,454 ft skyscraper up to modern day energy efficiency. They announced recently that the savings far exceeded their expectations.

Before we get to the savings, let’s look at one example of the sheer size of the effort. One of the efficiency measures implemented at the Empire State Building was the replacement of older windows with newer, more energy efficient models. We’re not talking a couple of hundred — a total of 6,500 windows were replaced when all was said and done!

The result of the retrofits? In one year, the owners of the Empire State building saved $2.4 million and kept 4,000 metric tons of carbon out of the atmosphere. And there are still a few upgrades being implemented to the building —like installing LED lights and upgrading the building’s 68 elevators — which will eventually take those savings to close $4.4 million annually.

That’s further proof that it pays for a company to seek further energy efficiency. And now the Empire State Building has one more thing to be iconic for — energy efficiency.