PENN1 Lessons Learned
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Optimize for comfort, energy efficiency, and sustainability


PENN1 was built with sustainability in mind and supports, if not accelerates, progress in our journey to our net zero goal. Our PENN1 office was designed to be LEED Silver compliant, which was challenging without touching the building envelope (e.g., windows), as that’s the domain of the building owner.

This drove another area of innovation: integrating the building control systems into a single, unified Operational Technology (OT) network. Traditionally, building systems—such as power, Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC), lighting, shades, and occupancy—were all separate. At PENN1, they all operate over a unified PoE network using standard Ethernet cable. This significantly simplifies the operation of the building management system (BMS), and enables our operations and real estate teams to have immediate insight into and control over these components (behind robust cybersecurity protection, of course).

The use of PoE for systems such as low-voltage lighting, window shades, and environmental systems significantly reduced energy consumption . PoE—particularly with the new PoE+ standard—can support up to 90W over Cat 8 cabling, eliminating the cost of line voltage cabling and installation, and ensuring accurate measurements can be taken for sustainability reporting purposes.

The critical insight, however, the technology needs to be evaluated and scoped into the very beginning of the building design phase, which traditionally is not the case.

A final point on sustainability: The entire PENN1 workplace was designed with the assumption that itshould support at least two technology lifecycle upgrades. Furniture and technology were placed in such a way that they can be changed without the cost, time, and construction debris of a remodel.

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