While our green building was built in 1908, we hold it to 21st century sustainability standards. Our century old facility located in Downtown Denver is a green event venue and coworking space that prioritizes the wellbeing of both people and the planet. We use our building as a Living Lab to test sustainable building solutions. Learn more about our high performance building and the strides we’ve made in the building sector!

MEASURING PERFORMANCE

The Alliance Center measures our building’s performance using the United States Green Building Council’s Arc platform. We have utilized this platform since 2015 and were the 5th building in the world to do so. We use this platform because it rates buildings’ impact across five categories – Human Experience (Wellness), Energy, Water, Waste and Transportation. View our Arc Dashboard score below or click to see it on the LEED Arc website. 
A graphic showing how The Alliance Center scores in regards to LEED Arc program

FEATURES OF OUR GREEN BUILDING

The Alliance Center was founded with a commitment to advance the wellbeing of both people and the planet. Below you can find a wide variety of features that set our green building apart and exemplify our focus on sustainability and providing a healthy workspace.

WELLNESS

On average, people spend almost 90 percent of their life in buildings. Because of this, we believe in the power of buildings to improve inhabitants’ quality of life. Heating and cooling methods, building material the layout of spaces and our WELL Health-Safety Rating are just a few of the aspects of a structure which can impact peoples’ mental and physical health. 

Filtration– Utilize MERV 13 filters with some of highest filtration media outside of hospitals or clean rooms

Paints – Exclusively low or no-voc paints 

ATP Testing- Validate cleanliness of a surfaces using ATP (adenosine triphosphate) testing which measures actively growing microorganisms on surfaces

Fresh, Clean Air- Continually verify air quality from the building and in our large conference rooms. Annually monitor tenant spaces for performance and exceed local and global averages by 25 and 50 percent, respectively.

Thoughtful Tenancy- Half of our building’s square footage is common space and half of our suites are collaborative work suites occupied by an average of five organizations each.

Tenant Events- We hold frequent community events for our tenants, including happy hours and bimonthly Fikas: a traditional Swedish coffee break to “slow down.”

Intentional Design- The layout of our building encourages people to move throughout their day to access shared conference rooms, kitchens and printers. 

Information Sharing- We provide multiple ways to share and access information including curating a community listserv, newsletters and information boards.

In-House Choices- Our Serendipity Coffee Bar provides healthy and delicious drink and food options, accommodating all dietary preferences. 

Event Food Selections- Our events promote healthy options with low fat and low sugar alternatives while also providing vegetarian and vegan options.

Groundwork Denver CSA- We partner with a local community supporter agriculture (CSA) who provides local vegetables to multiple tenants in the building. 

Encourage Stair Usage- We hold stair competitions during Earth Week to promote the use of stairs as opposed to our elevator for energy conservation and health promotion measures. 

Braille Signage- We have signage in Braille installed in multiple areas including conference room names, areas within our kitchens and the typical areas like restrooms, elevator and stairwells to accommodate members of the blind community, including one of our tenants Blind Institute for Technology

Restrooms for All- We have restrooms designated for men and women and also two dedicated all gender restrooms.

Yoga Classes- We host bimonthly yoga classes for free for our tenants. 

Wellness Room- We provide a private space in the building that tenants can reserve in advance or pop in for meditating, napping, nursing or other needs.

Just Labelling- We strive to be a socially just and equitable organization as seen in our labelling by JUST organization.

Safety and wellness are top priorities at the Alliance. Our cleaning standards, air quality management and occupant health programs follow best practices and have passed rigorous, third party verifications. We’ve been LEED Platinum for years and just became one of the first in the nation to earn the WELL Health-Safety rating. These accomplishments show our ongoing dedication to your wellbeing and that you’re safe at The Alliance Center.

ENERGY

The building sector consumes more than 70 percent of US electricity and emits nearly 40 percent of annual global greenhouse gas emissions, the largest of any single sector. There are simple ways buildings can conserve energy and larger innovations are also needed to reach the performance levels the climate crisis demands.

Benchmarking Ordinance- Based on energy performance, The Alliance Center is ranked 14th office building in Denver and second in the Lower Downtown neighborhood. The only building performing better than ours in LoDo was built in 2015 as compared to our 1908 structure. 

Energy Star- Energy Star is a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency voluntary program that helps businesses and individuals save money and protect our climate, through superior energy efficiency. Our Energy Star score is 92 currently, which means we use less energy than 92 percent of our peers

Green Leases- We use green leases to work with our tenants to reduce our collective footprint.

Living Laboratory- We seek out projects to test and showcase innovative technologies to the wider market. Learn more about our Living Laboratory program. 

Carbon Offsets- The Alliance Center offsets what it does consume and has been carbon neutral since 2008.

WASTE

Colorado on average has a recycling rate of 17 percent- far below the national average of 35 percent. The Alliance Center is continuously working to implement and discover ways to reduce our waste production with a goal of becoming zero waste, which is defined as a diversion rate of at least 90 percent. We currently divert over 85 percent of our waste!

Sustainable Products – Closed loop and high post-consumer recycled products such as Interface carpeting  are a priority.

Contractual Agreements – Office space and event customer legal agreements include both restrictions and incentives to reduce waste.

Homefill – Bulk retail store hosts events in our lobby for tenants to purchase sustainable products and bulk in reusable containers.

Better World Company – Host this zero waste company in our lobby; they allow our tenants to fill reusable containers with dish soaps, body wash, shampoo and other materials.

Reducing Event Food Waste – Food left over from events is made available to our tenants to prevent it from going to waste. Some of the food is weighed since we are part of the EPA’s Food Recovery Challenge.

Reusables – The Alliance Center provides reusable dishes and utensils for tenants to use for meals at work. 

Encourage Alternative Options – We partner with caterers who can provide reusable or compostable dishes and utensils during our 400+ annual events.

Dishware and Utensils –  We require reusable or compostable for events as well, as our in-house coffee vendor.

Hard to Recycle Station – Our building has a dedicated station to collects unique products from the tenants and broader community that cannot be recycled with our commercial recycler. This includes e-waste, plastics, pet food bags, water filters and many others. In 2019, the station resulted in a diversion of nearly 130,000 individual items from the landfill.

The Alliance Center’s Hard to Recycle Station takes items that aren’t normally accepted in municipal recycling streams such as lightbulbs, pens, and more. Located on the first floor of our building, this community resource is just one of our ongoing efforts to prevent waste from going to the landfill! 

WATER

Colorado is a headwater state and supplies water to 17 other states. However, we have used more of this resource than rivers can supply. Colorado anticipates a water deficit equivalent to 1 million households by 2050. The Alliance Center strives to conserve water in innovative ways to do our part in reducing our consumption of this precious resource.

Low-Flow Installations – Our building utilizes waterless urinals, low flow faucets and showers, high efficient pressure assist toilets, drip irrigation. This results in 5.7 gallons per square foot annual consumption.

On-Site Compressors – These are used to cool the building during the warm summer months, as opposed to a cooling tower which requires a continual feed of water.

Domestic hot Water Heaters – The utilization of gas has been eliminated from the entire building through heating via electricity.

TRANSPORTATION

The transportation sector generates the largest share of greenhouse gas emissions of all human activities. The Alliance Center works to reduce emissions by encouraging alternate transit options and lower emission vehicles. 

Transportation Options – Our location provides a variety of options as is evident by our walk, transit and bike scores.

Bike Parking – Providing several secure bike racks, dedicated parking lot space for bikes and worked with the city to convert an additional street parking space for bike commuters to encourage less driving.

Bike Tools and Air Pump – Available resources for tenants and the community to repair damaged bicycles or tires.

Available Showers – Showers and storage lockers are available to support walk and bike commuters.

 eGo CARSHARE VEHICLE – This resource is available in our parking lot so people don’t have to drive to work to make to to meetings throughout the day.

DC Electric Vehicle Fast Charger – We installed the first DC electric vehicle fast charger in Lower Downtown, which is capable of fully charging most electric vehicles in one hour.

Parking Pricing – These prices are intentionally set to ensure parking is used out of necessity and not convenience. For our reserved parking spaces, we prioritize organizations sharing the space and have reverse volume pricing whereby organizations pay an increased rate for additional parking spaces.