Last week, I had the pleasure of opening the “Oscars” of green building – the fifth annual EBie Awards. This special event, hosted by the Urban Green Council, of which I am honored to chair the board of directors, celebrates the best in existing buildings (that’s the “EB” in the award name) and the remarkable achievements of the sustainability leaders in the retrofit sector.
At UTC, we’ve been pleased to sponsor the EBie Awards from the start. In addition to new green construction, green retrofits are a large part of the green building movement, ensuring more sustainable cities for the future. In fact, according to the World Green Building Trends 2016 report, more than 40 percent of respondents in six countries, including the United States, expect to conduct green retrofits in existing buildings.
Of all the buildings that will exist in 2050, 85% are already built. That’s why the EBies are so important to recognize and encourage existing buildings to go green. Because buildings consume 40% of the world’s energy, the future of sustainability and the future of buildings go hand in hand.
Each year the range of EBie projects expands, with entries from more and more industry sectors. Finalists in 2016 included a public market, a prominent nonprofit and a national healthcare company – in addition to the offices, colleges, affordable housing and hotels whose teams place a high value on making their buildings more sustainable.
The finalist projects are all unique in their own way, but their aggregated results are also really impressive. Together, our 14 finalists improved over 13 million square feet of space and saved enough electricity to power over 3,700 homes for a year!
It was great to see some familiar faces at the EBie Awards and it’s always a treat to visit Times Square. I’d like to offer my congratulations to all of the finalists and winners. Truly, your accomplishments in sustainability are worth celebrating!
All Together Now
Jean Pullen for the Boys & Girls Clubs (multiple locations)
The Smooth Operator
Brad Collins for 560 Mission (CA)
It Takes a Village
Byron Cotton for Viacom & SL Green Upgrade (NY)
Take Me to the River
Dyron Dinsmore for Bank of America Plaza (GA)
The Verdant Brainiac
Bruce Hall for One Orlando Centre (FL)