Royal Centre is located in Vancouver, where new city bylaws require commercial buildings to report on the energy and carbon usage of their properties starting in 2024. The city is also preparing to roll out penalties for heating fuel emissions over a certain threshold starting in 2026 and will require zero emissions from heating fuels by 2040.
As an older building that remains vibrant and in demand, Royal Centre wanted to not only be prepared to meet the new regulatory requirements from the City of Vancouver, but also to improve energy performance and sustainability throughout its Class A office and retail space.
Leaders were interested in tracking and measuring energy usage to determine opportunities for continual improvement and to pursue industry designations that would exemplify their commitment to sustainability.
WPM, which handles property management for Royal Centre, partnered with Brightly to improve energy performance of this Class A office asset. The team implemented Brightly Stream™ in 2016 to begin tracking and reporting on energy, water and carbon usage data. Warrington also enrolled in Brightly’s Operational Analytics program, which leverages Brightly technical experts and real-time sustainability data via Brightly’s analytics platform to improve building performance and value.
Since implementing Stream, tracking and managing utility usage has become standard practice for Royal Centre. With a simple way to track and report on energy usage, it’s been easier for property management to determine changes that need to be made and prioritize sustainability projects, says David Basford, Royal Centre Property Manager for WPM.
Not only does Stream automatically track utility data, but it also flags anomalies in real-time utility usage and proactively identifies consumption increases or decreases. Brightly analysts review this data, along with data from the building’s automation system and analyze it to provide opportunities for operational improvements.
Also, Brightly’s team recently designed and procured a submetering system to fairly allocate electricity to the building’s tenants based on their actual energy usage, and to quantify lighting loads to reinforce the business case for LED retrofits. With the system in place, all electrical usage is measured for ongoing monitoring and cost allocation so that building managers can appropriately allocate electrical costs among tenants. While there was little visibility into the building’s lighting systems in the past, now lighting systems are tracked every 15 minutes, which has allowed for better planning and aligning lighting use with occupancy. “Because tenants are now responsible for their in-suite electrical costs, there’s an incentive for them to help drive down usage,” Basford says.
Based on data pulled from Stream and Royal Centre’s building automation system, the Brightly team also undertook a carbon transition feasibility study to provide options for de-carbonizing the building. For each option, the team includes the business case and how it would help the facility align with City of Vancouver regulations and WPM’s sustainability goals. Royal Centre is working with Brightly team members to prioritize and implement the options and navigate all the opportunities for energy savings.
As a result of using Stream, Royal Centre is now prepared to meet Vancouver’s 2026 emission limits and Warrington’s goals of a 30% reduction in emissions by 2030. “Having a tool like Stream provides a single point of truth for energy and carbon usage so we can see how we’re benchmarking and how we can plan for the future” says David Basford.
All the work to improve energy efficiency and cut costs has also translated into meeting industry targets. Royal Centre has now achieved LEED Gold certification and improved its ENERGY STAR score by 40 points.
Having a tool like Stream provides a single point of truth for energy and carbon usage so we can see how we’re benchmarking and how we can plan for the future.
Royal Centre Property Manager for Warrington