State to retrofit 10 buildings to cut long-term utility costs


POSTED: Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Ten state buildings are being retrofitted at a cost of $34 million to lower utility costs over the long term, Gov. Linda Lingle announced yesterday.

The 20-year project being undertaken by the Department of Accounting and General Services aims to reduce the overall utility bills for the buildings by 30 percent, with an estimated annual savings of about $3.2 million, officials said.

Improvements include installation of more efficient lighting systems, new building power controls, low-flow plumbing fixtures that use less water, upgraded air conditioner units and more efficient generators.

Together, the buildings — all in the State Capitol District downtown — encompass about 1.3 million square feet.

Similar retrofits and upgrades could be done for other agencies, Lingle said.





        The 10 state buildings that will be retrofitted in an effort to save utility costs:

» State Capitol

        » Kalanimoku (Accounting and General Services; Land and Natural Resources)

        » Keelikolani (Labor and Industrial Relations; Taxation)

        » Kekauluohi (State Archives)

        » Kekuanaoa (Attorney General)

        » Keoni Ana (Paroling Authority)

        » Kinau Hale (Health)

        » Queen Liliuokalani (Human Services; Education)

        » No. 1 Capitol District/Hemmeter Building (Business, Economic Development and Tourism; Budget and Finance)

        » Leiopapa-A-Kamehameha/State Office Tower (Human Resources Development)

“;It becomes a template,”; Lingle said. “;When we move on to our Department of Transportation, they'll be able to take all the knowledge that's been built up through this process and do all the airport buildings and harbor buildings.”;

The project is expected to create about 350 jobs over the next two years as buildings are retrofitted, with 25 to 30 permanent equipment maintenance and servicing jobs over the life of the project.

The contract is with Massachusetts-based Noresco, an energy consulting firm.

Lingle said the project also will allow the Department of Accounting and General Services to tackle a backlog of maintenance for state buildings.

In 2007 and 2008 the department submitted emergency funding requests totaling $1.6 million to deal with rising energy costs. Last year, as a cost-cutting move, Lingle said she would no longer seek emergency appropriations for agencies to make up utility costs.

“;This project will substantially reduce our demand for electricity and will help make up our utility budget deficit,”; said Russ Saito, state comptroller.

The money for the project comes from a combination of bond financing that previously had been approved for energy projects and a loan, the Governor's Office said.