A photo of photovoltaic solar panels in front of a city skyline

Building Systems

Smart Buildings Are Holistic

Exterior/Envelope
HVAC
Hot and Cold Water
Lighting
Solar, Cogen, and Batteries
Air-tight, well-insulated, and responsive

Envelope improvements can range from small air sealing tasks to major retrofits. The best times to consider these upgrades are at occupant turnover, end of useful life, in coordination with Local Law 11 fa├žade work, or at time of refinancing, new acquisition, or repositioning.

  • Well-sealed wall penetrations
  • High performance windows with sensors
  • Well-insulated, “cool,” and durable roof
  • Enhanced wall insulation
Responsive to occupant behavior and grid needs

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems should efficiently provide healthy and comfortable spaces. Improvements can range from fine-tuning your existing equipment to complete system overhaul. Consider these upgrades if there are frequent hot and cold complaints; mold, moisture, or odor issues; when incentives are available; or at time of refinancing, new acquisition, repositioning, or end of useful life.

  • Right amount of heating and cooling delivered at the right times
  • Well-ventilated spaces with good indoor air quality
  • Fault detection and prevention
High-efficiency and low water usage

Hot and cold water should be delivered efficiently to meet the needs of the building without excess. Consider a system upgrade if water bills are high, at occupant turnover, when incentives are available, or at time of refinancing, new acquisition, repositioning, or end of useful life.

  • Leak detection
  • Low-flow fixtures and toilets
  • Efficient domestic hot water production and delivery
Safe, well-lit, and responsive to real-time needs

Lighting systems should efficiently provide safe and well-lit conditions for a range of activities and occupant needs. Consider a system upgrade at any time for spaces with 24/7 lighting like lobbies, corridors, and stairwells. For other spaces, consider an upgrade at occupant turnover, when incentives are available, or at end of useful life.

  • LED upgrades
  • Occupancy or vacancy sensors
  • Photo sensors
  • Scheduling and controls
Responsive to energy market pricing, building demands, and/or grid needs

On-site generation and storage systems should be responsive to building demands and changing grid or market conditions. Consider a smart system upgrade when there is an opportunity for third-party financing, when incentives are available, or at time of at time of refinancing, new acquisition, or repositioning.

  • Connect how you buy energy with how you use energy
  • Flexible grid solutions
  • Two-way communication between the building and the utility
  • Resilient in the event of a power outage
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Spending Through the Roof

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Restrict Airflow Between Apartments

Aerosol sealant dramatically reduces air leakage with less labor time

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Strategies to improve indoor air quality and system performance

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Heat Pumps: The Outdoor Unit

Where to put your outdoor unit and how to operate most efficiently

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Heat Pumps: The Indoor Unit

Where to put your indoor unit to operate for efficiency and comfort

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Heat Pumps in Cold Climates

Beware of rated capacities

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Steam Upgrades at French Apartments

Affordable housing complex cut heating bill in half

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Clanging Pipes and Open Windows

Upgrading steam systems represents a smart strategy to meet environmental goals, save building owners money, and provide greater comfort to apartment residents.

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From condensing boilers to heat pumps, how to update NYC’s domestic hot water systems

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What to do About DHW

Good, bad, and outdated solutions for domestic hot water in multifamily buildings

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Hidden Costs of Wasted Water

Saving water can have a huge impact on the expense of operating multifamily buildings

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Efficient Lighting in a Passive House

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This primer from Philips explains how Power over Internet (PoE) standards enable smart, connected lighting systems.

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Lighting Retrofits with 32BJ

Lighting retrofits save energy and reduce operating expenses

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Battery Storage Potential

Evaluating the potential of behind-the-meter energy storage systems for multifamily buildings in the absence of interval data

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Learn more about distributed energy resources like cogeneration plants, solar PV, and battery storage

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Tune in to learn about some of the barriers and opportunities facing solar developers

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