Real Estate Weekly
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Green Building

How many lightbulbs does it take to save a bundle?

It takes a lot of bulbs to light the stairwells and hallways in 171 buildings that are home to tens of thousands of New Yorkers.

But the owner of the Parkchester apartments in the Bronx took advantage of Con Edison energy efficiency incentives to replace lighting in common areas throughout the giant complex.

Changing the lightbulbs is estimated to save Parkchester owners more than $300,000 a year.

The upgrades will save 1.6 million kilowatt hours of electricity a year. In terms of preventing greenhouse emissions, that’s the equivalent of taking 232 cars off the road. In terms of dollar savings, its more than $300,000 a year.

“Our state’s energy landscape is changing dramatically, as utility customers look for ways to manage their usage, save money and protect the environment,” said Matthew Ketschke, Con Edison’s vice president, Distributed Resource Integration.

“Our energy efficiency programs are one way that Con Edison helps customers like the Parkchester apartments achieve these goals.”

“We are pleased with how smoothly and quickly this project moved along and with the quality of the lighting that was installed,” said Charles Tucci, the general manager at Parkchester. “The Con Edison program gives owners of large businesses a chance to offset some of the costs of upgrades that will save them money in the long run.”

The project completed this summer included new lighting fixtures, LED bulbs, lamps and ballasts to replace older, less efficient equipment. Con Edison, through its Commercial and Industrial Energy Efficiency program, will put $407,000 toward the $1 million cost.

The Parkchester apartments have been an important part of New York City’s housing stock since the Metropolitan Life Insurance Co. finished building them in 1941. The complex is on 129 acres and includes more than 100 offices and retail spaces.

Con Edison’s Commercial and Industrial program offers incentives for upgrading equipment and for performance-based energy-saving solutions. Con Edison will pay up to 50 percent of the cost of a study to evaluate a building’s energy use and recommend ways to increase electric and gas efficiency.

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