Prestigious LEED, ENERGY STAR and TOBY Awards Achieved for 170 So Main Bldg. First Existing High Rise in Utah to be Awarded U.S. Green Bldg Council’s Designation


SALT LAKE CITYMarch 7, 2012—The 28-year-old 170 South Main building has been awarded the prestigious Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance certification, an ENERGY STAR rating of 80 and The Outstanding Building of the Year (TOBY) award.

The LEED certification for 170 South Main is a first for any existing high-rise building in Utah from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and verified by the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI).

The LEED award from USGBC, the ENERGY STAR rating from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the TOBY from the Utah Chapter of Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) International were achieved after six years of extensive and complicated energy-efficient renewal work. More than $1 million was invested to upgrade building equipment to achieve significant utility savings required for the awards.

The unique design and oval shape clad in glass and Alucobond panels makes the 15-story building a landmark in the heart of Salt Lake’s central business district. Its atrium creates an open and airy atmosphere on the first floor that houses a national bank and retail stores.

For nearly three decades, 170 South Main has had a diverse tenant mix, which includes a number of law firms, one of which has been a tenant since the building opened. Among the current 25 professional service firms are commercial real estate, title, gas exploration and production, wealth management and insurance companies.


LEED is an internationally recognized mark of excellence. LEED provides building owners and operators with a framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions.

ENERGY STAR is a governmental recognition program that offers organizations access to resources that help evaluate their building’s energy performance, reduce energy usage and lessen their overall carbon footprint.

The TOBY award honors the “best of the best” in commercial buildings by recognizing building quality and rewarding excellence in building management. All facets of a building’s operations are thoroughly evaluated. Buildings are judged on everything from community involvement and site management to environmental and “green” policies and procedures.

LEED-certified buildings are designed to:

  • Lower operating costs and increase asset value
  • Reduce waste sent to landfills
  • Conserve energy and water
  • Be healthier and safer for occupants
  • Reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions
  • Qualify for tax rebates, zoning allowances and other incentives

The LEED, ENERGY STAR and TOBY qualifications were either partially or wholly comprised of overall upgrades and automation work to electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems of 170 South Main, including:

  • Tenant Lighting, day lighting and plug upgrades: Introduction of improved lighting designs, day lighting controls, and plug load occupancy sensors in common areas and tenant spaces to reduce electricity costs and cooling loads.
  • Chiller Plant Retrofit: Chillers were replaced in 2010. New chillers are York centrifugal using 134A Freon refrigerant. The new chillers include variable speed frequency drives.
  • Whole-Building Control System Upgrade: Upgrade of existing building control system to allow for optimum HVAC operation as well as provide more detailed sub-metering information.
  • Ventilation System Enhancement: Ventilation energy recovery enhancements and upgraded controls in occupied spaces to improve air quality and reduce energy required to condition outside air.
  • Tenant Energy Management Systems: Introduction of individualized, Web-based power usage systems for each tenant to allow more efficient management of power usage.
  • Automated/Conservation Restroom Controls: Replacement of automated faucets, toilet flush units and paper towel dispensers in every restroom.
  • Building Retro-commissioning: Optimization of building operating performance to reduce costs and enhance occupant health and comfort.

LEED for Existing Buildings also addresses whole-building cleaning and maintenance issues (including chemical use), recycling programs, exterior maintenance programs, and systems upgrades.

The three awards were achieved under the direction of the property management group of Commerce Real Estate Solutions, an independently owned and operated member of the Cushman & Wakefield Alliance. The 170 South Main building is managed by Commerce and also houses its corporate headquarters. Commerce was assisted by ETC Group, a Salt Lake City energy engineering and sustainability consulting company.

“The awards for 170 South Main recognize it as a real leader in Utah for the retrofitting and upgrading of existing buildings to meet modern energy and green conservation requirements,,” said Mike Lawson, president and CEO of Commerce. “These certifications and awards are top criteria for many tenants today, and they reinforce the strong business case we have made for cost-effective energy systems that lower tenant occupancy costs.”

Leasing agents for 170 South Main are Dana Baird and Mike Richmond of Commerce. Baird can be contacted at (801) 303-5526 and Contact Richmond at (801) 303-5434 and

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>