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Pittsburgh Companies Cut Energy Use in Downtown Buildings

February 6, 2013 By Linda Hardesty

 

Four more partners have joined the Pittsburgh 2030 District, a collaborative of public and private organizations, working to create a high-performance building district in downtown Pittsburgh.

The newcomers are Heinz Field, US Steel Tower, properties of Point Park University and the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh. They join a campaign to cut energy, water and transportation consumption by 50 percent by the year 2030.

The commitments from the new organizations have pushed the District’s participation to just over 50 percent of the square footage of its defined area. This milestone is reached less than six months after the District was launched in August 2012.

To date, there are commitments from 31 property owners, including Carnegie Museums, Alcoa, The PNC Financial Services Group, Trek Development, Jones Lang LaSalle and all three Pittsburgh sports teams – representing nearly 28 million square feet. All of these Partners committed to reaching 50 percent reductions in their water use, energy use, and transportation emissions by 2030 – voluntarily.

2030 Districts have begun to sprout up across the country – first in Seattle, and now in Cleveland and Los Angeles, as well as Pittsburgh. The local USGBC chapter in Pittsburg, the Green Building Alliance, convened the 2030 District and is facilitating it there.

The District is aiming for 65 percent participation by the end of 2013.

At the bi-monthly District Partner meetings, property owners and managers work with community and resource partners like the Urban Redevelopment Authority and Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership to discuss water, indoor air quality, energy, and transportation.

The district will use Energy Star’s Portfolio Manager to benchmark energy usage, said Sean Luther, director of the Pittsburgh 2030 District for the Green Building Alliance. Organizers also are focusing on establishing baselines for water usage and transportation emssions. They plan to report progress for energy and water use by August. “It’s a long process and not a prescriptive process for individual properties,” said Luther.



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