Houston Landlords, Tenants Focus on ‘Green Competition’

Houston’s tenants and landlords have focused more on green building lately, and it all owes to competition.Energy companies can use a green office as a recruiting tool to attract engineers in a hotly competitive job environment, said Crescent Real Estate vice president Frank Staats. “They are looking all over the world for talent, so if you want to have someone relocate from Denver to Houston, you want to be able to offer them a healthy working environment,” he said.The number of new buildings that are LEED certified is also spurring landlords of existing buildings to join the environmentally friendly fray, Staats noted.Crescent Real Estate and its joint-venture partners are mapping out ways to make buildings in its 4 million-square-foot Houston Center more energy efficient. Though the expense can be heavy, Staats noted that the payback—for replacing chillers, for example—continues to look more beneficial as energy prices maintain their upward climb.For more on green office building in Houston, see “Self-Preservation” in the June 2008 issue of CPN or search this site for key word “Self-Preservation.”