Since it was originally built in the 1960s, the Toronto-Dominion Centre (TDC) has undergone several retrofits to bring it up to the modern standards of energy efficiency. The entire building envelope was redeveloped, and the original induction units, which were stored in the floor, were replaced with energy efficient upgrades, fitted in the ceiling. 

“Properties need to start disclosing more of their sustainability performance and focus on new opportunities for landlord and tenant collaborative partnerships.”

These changes resulted in a 50 percent reduction of heat loss per linear metre. TDC also installed submetering systems so that each tenant can view their own energy usage and make targets for improvement. 

Making the difference

But the man who oversaw these retrofits, David Hoffman, the General Manager of TDC, believes that for commercial real estate properties to truly achieve their maximum energy efficiency, there needs to be a stronger connection between business and sustainability. “Normal sustainability reports are usually regurgitations of what a company has done, I want to answer why; why it’s important to make energy savings,” says Hoffman. 

Hoffman says that the answer to that question lies in how the sustainability performance of a building enhances value creation for the tenants. He also notes that tenants are now demanding office space in green buildings, thus driving building managers to ensure that their buildings perform in an energy efficient manner.

But what more can building managers do to ensure that their buildings are sustainable? “Properties need to start disclosing more of their sustainability performance and focus on new opportunities for landlord and tenant collaborative partnerships,” Hoffman says.