Iconic U.S. Steel Tower Achieves LEED Silver Certification for Building Operations and Maintenance

11 February 2019

Pittsburgh, PA — Winthrop Management and evolve environment :: architecture are pleased to announce that the U.S. Steel Tower, the 64-floor skyscraper in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh, has earned LEED for Building Operations and Maintenance (O+M): Existing Buildings Silver Certification making it the second-largest LEED for O+M: Existing Buildings V4 office building in the world. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is the most widely used green building rating system and is the globally recognized symbol of sustainability achievement. The LEED for O+M: Existing Buildings rating system is unique compared to other versions of LEED because it is concerned with how existing buildings actually perform. The certification requires verified performance data that meets targets in the areas of Location and Transportation, Site Management, Water Efficiency, Energy and Atmosphere, Materials and Resources, and Indoor Environmental Quality in order to be certified.

“This is a tremendous honor and a true collaborative effort with our partners, building tenants, and owners,” said Thomas J. Harrington, General Manager of the U.S. Steel Tower. “To earn this designation for a building designed when energy was inexpensive and energy efficiency not a first priority is a notable accomplishment. We salute all our tenants who have supported our efforts, particularly UPMC, whose commitment to sustainability in multiple floor renovations has earned several Silver and Gold LEED certifications.”

Even after 50 years, the Tower is the nation’s seventh-largest high-rise office building and was designed when resource efficiency was not an expectation. Winthrop Management is continually improving the building operations, and this achievement was preceded by a BOMA 360 certification and three consecutive years of Energy Star certification (2016 – 2018) resulting from Winthrop’s leadership. UPMC’s LEED Silver and Gold certifications of nearly half of the building’s leasable square footage, over one million square feet, has also been instrumental in setting the tone for updating building standards and leveraging building improvements.

“LEED for O+M: Existing Buildings certification is the culmination of over ten years of various efforts, beginning with UPMC’s tenant certifications, then the Owner’s building systems improvements, then the engagement of the building tenants through a unique Tenant Sustainability Committee,” said Marc Mondor, AIA, Principal with evolveEA, the building’s and UPMC’s sustainability consultant. “We’re especially proud of this Committee, as Winthrop and the tenants rely upon it as a mechanism for ongoing awareness, engagement and improvement for the building and its users.”

Angelica Ciranni, Vice President of Strategy and Innovation at Green Building Alliance adds, “As a founding partner of the Pittsburgh 2030 District, the U.S. Steel Tower has continually advanced market standards for occupant health. Their performance-based investments across the spectrum of sustainable innovations present a national model for building renovations, driving Pittsburgh toward 50% reductions in energy, water, and transportation emissions.”


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