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Case Study

Tenants go green at Chicago's AON Center

Jones Lang LaSalle spearheaded a unique collaboration between building owner, management staff and tenants at Chicago’s 2.7-million-square-foot Aon Center, the fifth tallest skyscraper in the U.S.

As building manager, we proposed and received support for a grassroots sustainability concept called Tenants Go Green from building owner Piedmont Office Realty Trust. Representatives of eight of the largest organizational tenants met monthly with our facility management team to discuss best practices and initiatives to encourage sustainable tenant behavior ranging from individual signing of an energy conservation “Green Pledge” to tenant lights off and recycling campaigns.

As building owner, Piedmont committed to several capital improvements suggested by energy sustainability experts in our organization including energy-efficient building automation and equipment controls, and low-flow faucets in tenant restrooms and kitchens. Ownership has also supported our team’s building initiatives such as expanded recycling to include batteries and old office equipment, preferential parking for hybrid cars and bicycles, and conversion to green cleaning products consistent with LEED requirements.

The combined tenant and ownership efforts reduced Aon Center energy consumption by 10.2 percent in 2008 and an additional 13.4 percent in 2009. The capital improvement projects have reduced energy costs $0.20 per square foot, which adds up to $540,000 to date. The green partnership helped the Aon Center for the first time earn the ENERGY STAR label in 2009 with a score of 81, ranking it in the top 20 percent of similar buildings nationwide in energy efficiency. It also received a TOBY award as International 2009/2010 Office Building of the Year in its category.

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