Gensler Shows the Power of Commercial Tenants

This article was written for NYSERDA’s Commercial Tenant Program (CTP), which offers financial assistance for energy studies in tenant spaces. For more information on the program visit the NYSERDA CTP website.


Gensler’s new 120,000-square-foot office space is a huge statement for the world’s largest architecture firm – and for the power of commercial tenants. After over 25 years in Rockefeller Center, the firm relocated its 600+ employees to a new space at 1700 Broadway, which is just south of 54th Street. As a sustainably minded architecture firm, Gensler wanted the space to have their own signature, both in substance and style. Aesthetically, the space exudes a “backstage” feel, playing off its Theater District locale, which helped it top Crain’s 5 coolest NYC offices for 2018. Under the polished concrete floors and wood accents lies robust energy efficiency measures boasting over 600,000 kWh saved per year and causing a 25% increase in workplace satisfaction. In partnership with NYSERDA’s Commercial Tenant Program, the firm was able to install a state-of-the-art lighting system, consisting of high efficiency LEDs and dynamic control systems, ENERGY STAR appliances, and automatic plug load controls. A wide variety of sensors installed throughout the space monitor how staff interact with their environment and can adaptively control the office for optimum comfort, including daylighting, air quality, and temperature settings. Unique measures, such as the automatic receptacle controls, which turn off non-essential end-user devices when not in use, contributed around one third of the project’s savings.

Read NYSERDA’s case study for more details on how Gensler increased employee comfort while maintaining an environmentally friendly space.

NYSERDA’s Commercial Tenant Program focuses on balancing energy savings with financial requirements and empowering commercial tenants to work with their landlords to facilitate energy efficiency in commercial spaces. The program offers two tracks, Basic and High-Performance, which allow each participant the flexibility to meet their goals on their own budget. For more information about the program, check out NYSERDA’s website.

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To learn more about NYSERDA’s Commercial Tenant Program email