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200 West Madison

Retro-Commissioning (RCx)
Project Photo
PROJECT SNAPSHOT: 45-Story Office Building
Energy-saving improvements
  • Reduce simultaneous heating and cooling
  • Optimize snow melt system
Estimated annual savings 444,149 kWh
ComEd Energy Efficiency Program Incentive $49,500
Implementation cost $33,550
Estimated annual electric cost savings $28,509
Estimated payback after incentives 1.2 years

Project Summary

200 West Madison is a 45-story, 928,040 square foot office building located in the heart of the Chicago Loop. With the help of an Energy Efficiency Service Provider (service provider), this Transwestern-managed property completed a RCx study through the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program.

The Solution

In 2014, a new building automation system was installed to control the building’s HVAC system – a huge capital investment and the first significant upgrade since the 1980’s. To ensure the investment was fully optimized, 200 West Madison completed an RCx study. The study provided the owner, Multi-Employer Property Trust, an opportunity to further reduce energy consumption and optimize current systems.

Katie Sakach, Vice President of Management Services at Transwestern, noted, “You can spend the capital investment, install the system and let it run. What we were able to do through the RCx study was have access to a fantastic team of experts to ensure the system was installed correctly, running correctly and as efficient as it should be.”

The Team

The success of this project was a direct result of the effective collaboration between the service provider, Transwestern and the program. Sakach notes, “We definitely had the right team on this project and it was a great collaboration.” The team found opportunities to run the building as efficiently as possible for the owners, reduce energy consumption and increase the comfort of the building’s occupants. Sakach was delighted, stating, “This program allows owners to spend valuable dollars on actual investments. It results in increased ROI and overall building efficiency. For our team, it was a slam dunk to participate.”

Energy Saving Improvements

The energy-saving solutions implemented included reducing simultaneous heating/cooling in the offices and optimizing the outdoor snow melt system.

The primary improvement was tying the perimeter electric baseboards (heating) into the VAV boxes (cooling) by installing a pneumatic-to-electric switch to interlock the two via a single thermostat. Previously, the two pieces of equipment operated independently of each other. Now, money and energy are saved from reducing simultaneous heating and cooling within the system.

Before the study, the snow melt system was operating even when there was no snow on the sidewalk. A new temperature control sensor was installed to disable the system when there is no snow or ice present.

Kevin Kennelly, Chief Engineer at Transwestern, notes, “We are excited to show we are committed to being smarter on how we use our energy. I’m surprised everyone is not doing it.”

“This program allows owners to spend valuable dollars on the actual investments rather than soft costs, resulting in increased ROI, and overall building efficiency. For our team, it was a slam dunk to participate.”

Katie Sakach
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