2000 Westchester earns LEED Gold after recertification

By Devin Takekawa
Engineering Analyst
Sustainable Investment Group (SIG)

Standing in the suburbs of Purchase, New York is 2000 Westchester Avenue which is a 4-story building consisting of 867,305 SF. This building serves as a complex for Morgan Stanley, a well-known financial services and institutional securities company. Morgan Stanley purchased this complex from Texaco headquarters in the early 2000s. Since this time, the company has been focused on making the building sustainable and more energy efficient. Morgan Stanley made their first LEED effort in 2016 when the building management team invited Sustainable Investment Group (SIG) to help the building achieve its first LEED certification. In 2016, 2000 Westchester Avenue was awarded LEED Silver for existing building’s operations and maintenance (O+M).

Before earning their LEED Silver certification, Morgan Stanley wanted to pursue an Energy Star label for 2000 Westchester Avenue. The building owners understood that applying for the Energy Star label could satisfy the LEED prerequisite for the energy performance benchmarking and could also lead to energy savings. Once all of the energy data was collected, SIG provided the EUI metrics (Energy Use Intensity) to the EPA. The building earned an overall Energy Star score of 74, which did not make them eligible for the label, but it was able to satisfy the benchmarking energy performance prerequisite for LEED. Keeping this in mind over the years, Morgan Stanley realized that their Energy Star score can have a positive outcome on a LEED scorecard. Since the LEED Silver Certification in 2016, 2000 Westchester has been able to improve their Energy Star score from a 74 to 81, which earned them the label for the building. By increasing their Energy Star score and applying for new LEED credits in 2020, the building recertified for LEED-Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance, but instead of silver, they were awarded Gold!

image of LEED Gold SealIn this time span of 4 years the building has been able to increase energy savings and reduce their carbon footprint by becoming more energy efficient. During this time period, the building was able to accomplish the following:

  • Lowered their EUI by almost 15 kBtu/ft2. It was originally 125.4 kBtu/ft2 and now is at 109.5 kBtu/ft2.
  • Saved almost 2 million kWh of electricity which equates to 11.1% in savings.
  • Saved over 28,000 thermal units of natural gas which equates to 7.3% in savings.
  • Uses 23.16% less water than the New York code & compliance requires.
  • Implemented renewable energy sources, a 1 MW solar array and natural gas fuel cells, which is responsible for 3.55% of the building’s annual energy use.

Sustainable Investment Group would like to congratulate Morgan Stanley/Hines and the building management team for earning LEED Gold in their recertification of 2000 Westchester Avenue.

If your building is relatively older and still operating at a high level of efficiency, you could be eligible for the LEED certification, EBOM, EBOM stands for Existing Buildings Operation & Maintenance. SIG has plenty of experience working on buildings that qualify for the LEED O+M: Existing Buildings certification. Our Consultants and Engineers can provide expertise that could bump your LEED scorecard up to silver or even Gold like 2000 Westchester. Please feel free to reach out to us at SIG for any questions here.


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