265 Franklin Street Sustainable Investment Group
265 Franklin Street

Case Study for 265 Franklin Street

Client: The Clarendon Group

photo of lobby of 265 Franklin Street | Boston, MA | LEED Gold Certified

265 Franklin Street located in Boston, MA is LEED® Gold Certified. This process was led by Sustainable Investment Group (SIG) Team Members, Monica Gonzalez and Jeff Stewart.

Overview
In a city with over 570 green certifications, Boston is an established market for the LEED® green building program. The Clarendon Group, one of SIG’s Boston clients, also has a team of forward-thinking and sustainably-minded professionals managing the 21-story building at 265 Franklin Street. This project was really exciting because the initial brainstorming meetings started with, “How far can we go?”

We started by closing minor gaps in the scorecard. Breakroom sinks were the only fixture this already water-efficient building needed to improve upon. By regulating the fixture flow to be slightly slower, it allowed the project to collect all 5 points for 35% Indoor Plumbing Efficiency. The building’s green cleaning program was working so well that the project earned an innovative performance credit for implementing a strategy to purchase 94% of cleaning product with green qualities like recycled content or reduced toxicity.

Janitorial supplies are hard to pitch as sexy, but the ‘green’ industry remains exciting because new products are being invented every day to meet growing consumer interest in sustainability. One product used at 265 Franklin that meets those qualities is the SoyGreen® Stainless Steel Cleaner. Unlike other products that may call themselves ‘green’ or even dye their product green; the SoyGreen cleaner is certified under EPA’s Design for the Environment Program, and USDA Biopreferred Program; it is bio-based and biodegradable!

Another maxed-out credit strategy is heat island reductions through no surface parking and high-transit ridership. 265 Franklin exceeds national standards and earned 16 LEED points for these combined measures. With all the circuits closed, this well-oiled machine has soared to LEED Gold certification. The LEED® process for 265 Franklin focused on long-term goals that were set.

A recent trend in waste management nationwide challenges construction projects to increase recycling rates to 90% or greater. All stakeholders in this project collaborated well to achieve a 90% diversion rate on interior renovation waste generated during the performance period. The collective efforts resulted in 50 tons of construction waste diverted from landfills.

The team also set goals for sustainable office supply and furniture purchases. These are two of the most difficult credits for existing buildings to earn because it requires shifting the paradigm of how you shop. You may not even know what is available unless you know what to look for. How green can our furniture be? As green as the Earth.

One tenant purchased chairs made with corn husks and mushrooms-a highly innovative bio-based synergy. The furniture maker Gunlocke sells a product line called Savor which features a Myco-board seat back.

“Constructed of agricultural byproducts, such as corn stalks, which are bonded together through the growth of mycelium, the analogous roots of mushrooms, the Myco board is certified under the USDA’s bio-preferred program, and Cradle to Cradle Gold Certified.” – Gunlocke

Let’s ask again, “How far can we go with energy savings?” We need to go beyond the standard LEED® path of an ASHRAE level I Energy Audit. At 265 Franklin, SIG completed an ASHRAE level II Energy Audit. Most of the energy conservation measures recommended have simple payback periods. These measures will lead to increased energy savings and cost savings over a relatively short time frame.

Sustainable Investment Group’s Role at 265 Franklin Street:Photo of 265 Franklin Street Boston, MA | LEED Gold certified | SIG

  • LEED® for Existing Buildings: O+M

Engineering Scope of this project:

  1. ASHRAE Level I energy audit
  2. ENERGY STAR profile updates
  3. Refrigerant Management
  4. I-BEAM Assessment
  5. Emissions Reductions verification
  6. Minimum ventilation verification

The value added for Engineering work for the project:

In addition to our normal LEED engineering services listed above, SIG also conducted an ASHRAE Level II energy audit which goes into more detail than a Level I audit. This provided an additional 4 LEED points, in addition to energy conservation measures that will lead to higher ENERGY STAR scores.

LEED Certification Level: LEED® Gold

Energy Star Score: 84 (at time of LEED certification)

Total Square Feet: 368,061

SIG team members that worked on this project:

  • Monica Gonzalez, VP of Development and Strategic Planning
  • Jeff Stewart, Mechanical Engineer, ENERGY STAR Team Lead

Fun facts about this building:

  • Within walking distance to the Boston Harbor.
  • Outstanding view of the Boston Harbor from several suites.
  • The 265 Franklin team purchased RECs (renewable energy credits) to offset 90% of energy consumed.  This made the building eligible for 6 LEED points (5 for EAc4 plus a Regional Priority Credit).  This supports the research and production of renewable energy.

Building Address:
265 Franklin Street,
Boston, MA 02110

Virtual Address:
www.265franklinstreet.com

Year Built:
1984

Conclusion:
The property team at 265 Franklin is incredibly committed to increasing efficiency and sustainable operations at the building; the LEED certification was a way to acknowledge that dedication. The team championed all efforts required to take the steps towards LEED Gold with high levels of involvement, willingness to go the extra mile, and genuine excitement regarding the LEED outcome.  LEED Gold would not have been possible without the property team’s enthusiasm; so, we would like to give a big “thank you” to them.