Residents at The Pearl Reap the Benefits of Energy Efficiency

By Better Buildings Beat Team on Mar 18, 2019

Through Better Buildings, DOE is working with market leaders to identify and demonstrate the multiple benefits of energy efficiency.  In their latest Better Buildings showcase project, The Tower Companies has created a prime example with The Pearl.  

The Pearl, which received LEED Gold Certification and is the first-ever Fitwel-certified multifamily residential building, is an example of prioritizing energy efficiency and seeing the positive impacts in attracting tenants and improved occupant comfort. The Pearl is modeled to reduce energy consumption by 21% annually and achieve annual cost savings of $156,000 relative to ASHRAE 90.1 2007.

The Tower Companies, the property owner and manager, and a two-time Better Buildings Challenge Goal Achiever, committed to energy and water use reduction goals of at least 20% by 2020 for over 2.5 million square feet of their portfolio. They surpassed these goals with 25% energy savings and 21% water savings three years ahead of schedule.

The Pearl is a 14-story complex, with 284 residential studio, 1-, 2-, and 3-bedroom apartment units. The building features a variety of energy- and water-saving components such as a solar PV array uniquely integrated into a 1,250-square-foot vegetated green roof, as well as efficient lighting and appliances.

The solar panels are designed to generate enough power to offset nearly 1% of the common area electricity load annually and can be monitored in real-time using an online dashboard. In 2018, the first full year of operation, the solar PV system generated nearly 4,000 kWh.

In addition to the rooftop solar installation, The Pearl features:

  • Energy- and water-efficient appliances and fixtures
  • Lighting and HVAC controls
  • 15 and 16 SEER heat pumps
  • 4 Electric Vehicle (EV) charging stations
  • An additional 5,000 square feet of green roof that can hold over 5,000 gallons of rain
  • High-efficiency drip irrigation systems reducing potable water consumption by over 60%
  • A robust recycling and composting program
  • The first multi-family Fitwel Certification in the world


The Pearl’s commitment to sustainability and wellness attracts prospective residents, engages the leasing team and equips them with more information to elevate the building. Some residents have reported they chose The Pearl because of its sustainability and wellness features specifically. The Tower Companies has seen first-hand the possibilities of a thoughtful health and wellness program coupled with an energy efficient design in differentiating The Pearl from surrounding buildings.

To read more about Tower’s work as a Better Buildings partner go to their partner profile.