The pandemic and the pursuit for office buildings to become more sustainable, coupled with businesses telling their employees to return to the office, are forcing companies and commercial office owners to rethink how to improve the workplace.
As work patterns have changed, it’s now time to take a deeper look at the future of using space and how office properties and buildings will accommodate the workforce as occupancy rates hang in the balance.
Tenants are more demanding, and the pandemic has taught us that clean air is vitally important in reducing the risk of transmission of airborne illnesses. Clean air in offices and smaller spaces has become a priority among employees.
And government officials and managers who are responsible for making decisions about the safety of the workplace are now more cognizant as notices about new variants and other potential airborne toxins are exposed.
Class B Buildings Stand to Gain from a Branding Standpoint
While new Class A buildings arrive with modernized amenities and provisionary engineering for providing higher levels of IAQ, less modern or aged Class B and C buildings almost always lack the ability to provide higher rates of ventilation, as a minimum. Furthermore, many less luxurious Class B buildings are not as highly sought after. But these buildings remain important due to their price points.
Innovative technologies are needed now to keep these buildings on the market despite poorly designed, older HVAC systems and/or the inability to provide cost effective ventilation that will be needed to meet new LEED certification requirements.
For the health and safety of tenants, 24/7 continuous air quality monitoring makes it possible to purify and measure air quality without increased ventilation. Also, the IAQ can be displayed by a public view display where occupants can not only see their air quality in real time but also see a comparison of indoor and outdoor air quality and, in many cases, the air they are breathing in the building is better than the outdoor air.
Numerous case studies show IAQ technologies can provide reduced energy, reduced carbon, and improved air quality.
Many commercial buildings, including Class B, are responsible for a sizable portion of global emissions. These buildings are not code-compliant and need to achieve Energy Star ratings. One of the main problems is that HVAC systems in these buildings can be the largest user of energy. By deploying our technology, these older buildings can gain sustainability initiatives by working toward a dual purpose in reducing energy needed to maintain IAQ while simultaneously reducing the total carbon footprint and meeting certification requirements.
Technology Can Achieve Air Quality Without Using More Energy
In many cases, real estate properties have declined in value as financing costs have increased. Refinancing in a higher interest rate environment can be difficult. The bottom line is that by using technology, buildings can reduce operating costs through energy savings. In terms of Class B and C facilities, when you have a less attractive building with less to offer in terms of luxury, one selling point is that you can assure the occupants that you have a healthy building. Overall, the upshot is that you can use technology to improve IAQ without using more energy and money to achieve the same goal.