Macerich property meets new green-building standard - Smart Energy Decisions

Commercial, Demand Management, Energy Efficiency, Solar  -  March 14, 2017

Macerich property meets new green-building standard

Shopping-center developer Macerich, a real estate investment trust, said March 8 that one of its properties, The Oaks in Thousand Oaks, Calif., became the first U.S. building to meet BRE America’s new green-building standard as a BREEAM In-Use certified building.

"Macerich is a proven industry leader in sustainability, not only when it comes to new buildings, but also in terms of how we update, modernize and operate our well-placed established retail properties in top markets," said Jeff Bedell, Macerich’s vice president of sustainability. "Measuring existing projects against strong environmental standards, such as BREEAM, confirms our integrated sustainability efforts are delivering results at the highest levels."

Established 25 years ago, the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Methodology rating system was implemented to drive energy efficiency efforts in new and existing buildings around the globe, according to a news release. The BREEAM USA In-Use measure is meant to address the 5.6 million existing nonresidential properties in the U.S. that cannot currently meet sustainability benchmarks to earn green-building certification.

Originally developed in 1978, The Oaks underwent renovations in 1993 and 2009, incorporating environmental upgrades including the installation of 6,000 solar panels, which produce 1,652 kW of power, and the use of LED lighting, with controls that allow the facility to minimize energy consumption and lower its carbon footprint.

Additionally, the property features an upgraded HVAC system for reduced energy usage and integrated thermal controls in common areas and offices, which are regulated to save energy, according to the release. The property also produces more than 500 tons of mixed recycling per year.

"With its clear dedication to sustainability in commercial real estate, it makes perfect sense that Macerich would have the first BREEAM USA In-Use certified building in the United States," BRE America CEO Barry Giles said. "We look forward to bringing the BREEAM USA In-Use registration and certification to properties across the country, because any building, no matter the size, age or performance level, benefits greatly from measuring and monitoring its environmental performance."

The shopping-center REIT said it plans to work with building auditor Healthy Buildings to implement the BREEAM In-Use standards and certify other properties in its portfolio.

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