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Sears Tower Unveils Sustainable Plan to Transform Tallest Building in Western Hemisphere

Post Time:Jun 26,2009Classify:Industry NewsView:404

CHICAGO, June 24 /PRNewswire/ -- Sears Tower today announced plans for the most significant sustainable modernization projects of an existing building ever undertaken. The project will result in unparalleled energy savings and reduced CO2 emissions to the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere, reducing the base building electricity use by up to 80 percent, which includes a combination of energy savings and co-generation. The energy savings equal 68 million kilowatt hours annually or 150,000 barrels of oil every year. The sustainability plans also drive economic development in the West Loop, creating more than 3,600 jobs, and are part of a broader initiative to transform the global icon.

"Sears Tower, an iconic structure that defines the city's skyline, will undergo a groundbreaking transformation that creates economic growth with positive impact on our environment, leaving a lasting legacy for future generations," said John Huston of American Landmark Properties, representing the partnership that owns Sears Tower. "As the stewards of this icon, we take seriously our responsibility to make it relevant and successful, and the changes made and benefits realized through the bold sustainable initiatives at the tower serve as an example that a sustainable future is more than a concept, it is within our reach."

The building, which already meets Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) criteria, will undertake sustainability initiatives above and beyond those used by the United Stated Green Building Council to rate a green building. Modernization strategies, designed by Chicago-based Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG), include:

Efficiency improvements to the building's exterior envelope and windows. The tower has 16,000 single-pane windows. Sustainability plans for the building call for a window replacement and glazing program. Strategies to achieve a thermal break of the curtain wall are also being investigated. These upgrades would achieve savings of up to 50 percent of heating energy.
Mechanical systems upgrades in the form of new gas boilers that utilize fuel cell technologies, which generate electricity, heating and cooling at as much as 90 percent efficiency. Mechanical upgrades also will include new high-efficiency chillers and upgrades to the distribution system.
The tower's 104 high speed elevators and 15 escalators that will be modernized with the latest technology to achieve 40 percent reduction in their energy consumption.
Water savings that will be realized with conservation initiatives through upgrades to restroom fixtures, condensation recovery systems and water efficient landscaping, which will reduce water usage by 40 percent and save 24 million gallons of water each year.
Lighting that will be upgraded through advanced lighting control systems and daylight harvesting, an advanced lighting control system that automatically dims lights in tenant spaces based on the amount of sunlight entering through the windows. Combined, these upgrades will save up to 40 percent of lighting energy consumptionRenewable energy like wind and solar, and technologies like green roofs that will be tested. Wind turbines will be tested to take advantage of the tower's height and unique set-back roof areas. Solar hot-water panels will help heat water for the building. Green roofs that can sustain high- altitude conditions, and that will be among the tallest in the world, will be tested to reduce storm water runoff, improve insulation, help mitigate the urban heat island effect, and provide pleasant vistas for tenants overlooking the areas.

Source: http://sev.prnewswire.comAuthor: shangyi

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