NY Times Building

Last summer, it was the ceramic rod curtain wall.  Now, it’s the lighting system.  Various green aspects of the New York Times Building continue to make high profile news and it’s only been a year since the modern building opened.  Here’s the deal: The Times Company installed Lutron’s Quantum solution, a total light management system that includes daylight, occupant, target set point, time clock, and emergency lighting controls.  Although the building was originally designed to use approximately 1.28 watts per sf of lighting power, with the Lutron technology, it’s actually using only 0.38 watts per sf of lighting power — a 70% reduction in lighting use.  That means, based on New York City electric rates, they’re saving ~$315,500 and preventing the emission of 1,250 metric tons of CO2 annually.  These are some serious numbers.  Here’s where they recognized the most in terms of lighting energy savings:


  • 30% – daylight harvesting
  • 10% – occupancy sensing
  • 2%  – scheduling
  • 58% – light level tuning

Goes to show you that significant savings can be recognized by using smart systems that optimize lighting based on the amount of natural light already in the building. 

Building systems are all related and energy savings are only one aspect of an owner’s considerations.  In setting up the advanced lighting system, the Times Company was particularly worried about glare control and employee comfort.  Apparently, though, everything went as planned and employee satisfaction has increased since the installation.  So they recognize lower operating costs and higher employee satisfaction — how much more clear can the case for green buildings be?

[+] NY Times Lighting System Case Study [PDF]




Photo credits: Nic Lehoux.