A new map, developed by the Modi research group is painting the Manhattan grid according to how much energy those world-famous sky-scrapers are predicted to use.
The map has been created based on a predictive mathematical model, not building data, to give New Yorkers a sense of where energy use is happening on their patch.
The most obvious feature is the dense red area in mid and up-town Manhattan, not surprising, because it is the heart of the commercial business district, which you can see on this map of land usage by lot.
The other thing we noticed was the difference in calculating energy intensity. The measure is given in kWh/m2 of “land area”, referring to the building’s ground footprint. The highest energy-using buildings are in the order of over 5,000 kWh/m2 per year and the lowest use 50-75 kWh/m2 per year.
You can see the real electricity use over nine years for three commerical office buildings on Market Street, Sydney, compared to the portfolio average in this filtered graph from our datalyzer. It shows the archival energy use of buildings in the portfolio falling between 15.6 and 6.7 kWh per m2 of total floorspace (net lettable area of the buildng) per month. So in this case, we can’t compare the two definitions of "metres squared" (or apples ain’t apples for the Big Apple).
While it is a bit tricky to directly compare Sydney buildings to the modelled NYC buildings using these two web pages, both the visualisations attempt to compare performance within their own city. Ultimately our goals are the same: to help to move towards lower carbon, higher performing buildings.
Research leader Vijay Modi says “This map will enable NYC building owners to see whether their own building consumes more or less than what an average building with similar function and size would,” said Professor Modi. “This is the first time anyone has provided an estimate like this for New York City and the first time anyone has offered information to the public in the form of an interactive map.”
So in NYC, those in the commercial district can get a ‘red light’ from this map as to whether their building might be in the top bracket, while those in the more residential Willamsburg may be more interested in which buildings are a lighter shade of orange in their neighbourhood.
With more projects like this on the web, we seem to be seeing a trend towards researchers and the property sector recognising the importance of information and motivation for people to make change.
Reminder - live blogging, this week Green Buildings Alive and its host organisation ISI exist to keep the discussion moving forwards. We're holding a question and answer session (Q+A) with team members online on March 16 Australian time (March 15 for readers in the Americas), details are in our last post.
See international times for Sydney, Australia.