Citi today celebrates the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum certification of its New York City flagship branch in Union Square, becoming the world's first bank with 200 LEED-certified projects.
LEED is the U.S. Green Building Council's leading rating system for designing and constructing the world's greenest, most energy efficient, and high performing buildings.
"Citi has demonstrated a company-wide dedication to economic, environmental and human health by embedding LEED principles into its design and refurbishment process."
Citi announced the opening of its New York City flagship branch in Union Square in December 2010, and the branch earned LEED Platinum certification in May of this year. The 9,700 square foot branch is located at 14th Street and Broadway. Drawing on "smart banking" technologies pioneered by Citi in Asia, the branch features six interactive sales walls; free online access and Wi-Fi for customers; and 24/7 access to customer service experts via video-assist. Environmentally friendly features include 100 percent ENERGY STAR rated equipment, high efficiency, energy optimizing lighting controls and nearly a quarter of all building materials manufactured using recycled content.
The announcement is a direct result of a $50 billion pledge Citi made in 2007 to address global climate change over the next 10 years, which includes financing for the renewable energy and clean technology industries as well as investments in reducing its corporate environmental footprint through procurement, energy use and its own real estate portfolio. To date, Citi has directed over $36.4 billion towards these activities as part of this initiative.
"With so many physical locations around the world, our Citi Realty Services team can make a huge impact on the environment," said Don Callahan, Chief Administrative Officer and Chief Technology & Operations Officer for Citi. "We committed in 2007 to employ strict sustainable-building practices for all of our new construction and renovation projects worldwide. We also have a goal to LEED certify 15% of our global real estate portfolio by 2015. These are just some of the ways we're working to be as environmentally responsible as possible."
"Citi is a 200 year old company that continues to thrive because of its resourcefulness and willingness to lead in areas like environmental stewardship," said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO and Founding Chair, U.S. Green Building Council. "Citi has demonstrated a company-wide dedication to economic, environmental and human health by embedding LEED principles into its design and refurbishment process."
Citi, which turned 200 years old on June 16th, was one of the first global financial services companies to publicly join the fight to slow climate change and reduce its energy dependence. The global bank was also a leader in the development of the Equator Principles, which established best practices for assessing and mitigating environmental and social risks in project finance.
"Through our sustainability efforts, we get the double benefit of helping the environment while reducing our corporate expenses," said John Killey, Citi Realty Services' Global Head of Building Operations. "We had a goal to reduce our greenhouse-gas emissions by 10% from 2005 levels by the end of last year, and our participation in the USGBC's programs helped us exceed that goal while cutting costs."
Other major Citi projects that have received LEED certification include two Citi office parks in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, a 50-story skyscraper in the New York City borough of Queens, and data centers in Georgetown, Texas, Frankfurt, Germany and Singapore. Citi expects to reach 263 LEED-certified projects by the end of 2012.