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BUILDINGS Bulletin - Presented by BUILDINGS

Chamberlain Discusses Technology, Generations at Work in State of the Industry Address
BOMA International President Henry Chamberlain presented his annual State of the Industry address during Tuesday’s general session. In it, he highlighted the latest technology trends affecting commercial real estate. “With technology, you don’t need to be an expert, but you need to understand what’s going on around you,” Chamberlain noted.

He told attendees to be aware of what’s coming in the future, like artificial intelligence and robotics. Data, he said, is becoming the new currency, saying that reviewing and analyzing internal and external data can create a lot of value. Other technology trends attendees should be aware of include:

Wireless power: Power can be transmitted through the air up to 30 feet. That kind of power could charge your phone or computer while at your desk or operate the lighting system. Building owners need to think about how this changes the design of buildings in the future as it becomes an expectation of tenants.

Trackable devices: These provide a view of where occupants are and how they’re using the building so you can adjust needs and services like temperature control and security in certain areas.

3D phones: A better way to present information, property professionals could use 3D phones to, for example, pull up a building schematic.

Drone technology: Already used for looking at building envelopes and rooftops, drones will soon deliver packages. Think about whether your building is able to receive the packages or how you might need to adapt.

While the focus of Chamberlain’s talk was about technology, he spoke about how three generations – baby boomers, Generation X and millennials—are working together, each with unique needs and priorities. He noted that at work, while baby boomers value salary, Generation X wants balance and millennials seek happiness. “As you look to build teams in the future, you need to focus on these styles,” Chamberlain explained. Right now, he said, “it’s an industry in amazing transition.”

Meet the Green Lease Leaders
Building sustainable practices into your leases isn’t just the right thing to do for the planet. Leading-edge landlords know it’s the right thing to do for the budget, too.

“We look to our commercial sector partners—office building owners and managers, retailers, restaurants, grocery stores, you name it—to help lead the way in energy savings,” said Dr. Kathleen Hogan, deputy assistant secretary for the Department of Energy's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). EERE and the Institute for Market Transformation (IMT) honored 23 organizations and were recognized as Green Lease Leaders at BOMA 2018 this year, and for the first time, the program recognized progress toward implementation with two levels of recognition. The nine Silver level honorees have implemented foundational policies and business practices, while the 14 Gold level organizations have built on the requirements for Silver by executing the sustainable leases and fit-outs they’ve negotiated.

“Buildings use 40 percent of our nation’s energy and we spend almost $200 billion each year to power our commercial buildings. About 20 percent of this energy is being wasted on average,” explained Dr. Hogan. “If we can save this energy, it reduces costs, reduces pollution and can help improve the reliability of our energy systems.” But, she added, “I’m sure it’s no surprise to you to hear that commercial real estate is leading the way in these efforts.”

BOMA International is a Supporting Partner of Green Lease Leaders and recently issued an updated Green Lease Guide, which has helped building owners and managers implement energy- and water-efficient practices in leases and corporate guidelines for more than 30 years. If you haven’t ordered your updated guide yet, you’re in luck. Conference attendees get an exclusive 20 percent discount throughout July by using the promo code GREENER in the BOMA International bookstore, according to Chair-Elect Brian Cappelli.

“It always comes down to understanding what you can do that makes sense for your bottom line,” Hogan said after the conference. “A lot of what we do at the Department of Energy is to try to work with leading organizations that are trying to put sustainable technologies in place and show that it really does pay from a cash–flow standpoint.”

Read an exclusive Q&A with Dr. Hogan at

The Amenities That Tenants Really Want
Today’s commercial tenants and occupants expect more from their workplace. It’s not just about a desk and a chair anymore, and the evolution of what tenants need and want puts more pressure on building owners and property or facility managers to provide and deliver amenities that will attract and retain top talent.

The employee experience is defined by three factors, according to Jeanne Wood, senior associate vice president at CallisonRTKL: culture (HR, benefits and what the building feels like as you walk in), technology and the built environment. “Bring those three things together and talk about them with tenants,” Wood said. “Ask employees and tenants what they’re looking for, and don’t stop at the tenant point person. Go deeper to find out trends and identify what’s happening.”

During the Tuesday General Session, sponsored by BOMA Cornerstone Partner Yardi, a panel of industry experts discussed New Tenant Amenity Demands: Creating a Better Workplace Experience.

Moderated by Jim Tainter, managing director of the Landlord Services Division at NAI Partners, the panel included the above-mentioned Wood and:

  • Brian Harnetiaux, BOMA Fellow, senior vice president of Asset Management at McCarthy Cook;
  • Amanda Heismann Gray, general manager at Lillibridge Healthcare Services Inc.; and
  • Sam Schaefer, managing director and global head of Property Management, Leasing & Corporate Outreach at Tishman Speyer.
“We get so rooted in getting a deal done, getting a tenant in and having them happy,” Tainter added. “We might be missing opportunities if we’re not creating an amenities package.”

Ready for more tips on creating the amenities tenants crave? Check out for more ideas.

Read more highlights on

How to Implement Sophisticated Technology
New building technologies can slash your energy spend and increase tenant comfort—but only if people are actually using them. Vetting technology investments properly is vital, and so is careful integration that gets every person in the building invested in using the new tool.

“The first and foremost thing is to figure out how you’re going to frame a new technology to leapfrog into a world where you’re not only increasing the value of your building, but also reducing the cost of running the portfolio,” said Lindsay Baker, vice president of Sustainability & Wellbeing for global networking platform WeWork during an education session at BOMA 2018. “It’s a means to an end. Technology is not the goal. The goal is a great portfolio that runs well with people who love being there.”

In your excitement to implement the latest and greatest, beware of “death by dashboard,” warned Deborah Boyer, executive vice president and director of Asset Management for the Swig Company, a privately owned real estate investor operator. Don’t get so invested in bells and whistles that you accidentally create more work for yourself, she advised. Technology is supposed to solve problems, not create new ones.

“You need to ask, does this technology solve a problem for me? Does it fill a specific need? Is it a must-have or a nice-to-have?” Boyer asked. “Would it be interesting to know this data that some piece of technology can measure for you? It might be interesting, but what are you actually going to do with it and how will knowing that improve the bottom line or the tenant experience?” She added, “If you have to log in to see it and take action on it, are you really going to do that every day? Are your property managers or engineers going to do that, or will it be wasted?”

A Night of Celebration at the TOBYs
Tuesday night was alive with excitement for the commercial real estate industry’s highest recognition honoring excellence in commercial building management and operations, the annual BOMA International The Outstanding Building of the Year® (TOBY®) Awards, sponsored along with the banquet by The Home Depot!

Before the ceremony began, people gathered to toast all 80 of the nominated buildings. During the reception, the crew pictured above celebrated a deep renovation at nominee 205 West Wacker in Chicago that involved revamping many of the building systems; adding a fitness center and food hall; and improving the corridors, lobby and facade. From left: Jeb Scherb of Ameritus; Kim Conolty of Ameritus, who served as project manager on the renovation; Bob Quast, president of BOMA/Chicago; Claudine Hartzell; and Jack O’Rourke of Able Services.

This year saw the most international awards in TOBY history, noted outgoing chair Rob Brierley, BOMA Fellow, with more than 50 different cities represented in the nominations. At the end of the night, Canadian properties took home five awards, an all-time record.

Among the Canadian buildings recognized was Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport in Dorval, Quebec, winner of the new Public Assembly Building category. The building’s team is shown above with Brierley holding the Canadian flag. The property is managed by Aéroports de Montréal and owned by Transport Canada. It was one of two new categories debuting this year. The other new category, Mixed-Use, recognized BOMA 360-designated property Ponce City Market in Atlanta (managed by Jamestown Commercial Management Company and owned by Jamestown PCM Master Tenant LP), a historic, mixed-use community hub featuring food, retail, residential lofts and office space.

Big Texas Building Wins Big Honor
The “granddaddy prize of them all,” the much-coveted award for Over One Million Square Feet, went to Dallas-based Bank of America Plaza, a BOMA 360-designated building managed by Peloton Commercial Real Estate and owned by Dallas Main LP. The building anchors the commercial business district, features 55 tenants and is a best-in-class office environment.

Other winners by size include:

  • 500,000 to One Million Square Feet: 100 N. Riverside, Chicago, a BOMA 360-designated building managed by CBRE and owned by Boeing 100 N. Riverside LLC;
  • 250,000- 499,999 Square Feet: 8200 Tower, Bloomington, Minnesota, a BOMA 360-designated building managed by Cushman & Wakefield and owned by ML-AI Normandale LLC;
  • 100,000 to 249,999 Square Feet: 980 Howe, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, a BOMA 360-designated building managed and owned by Manulife Real Estate; and
  • Under 100,000 Square Feet: 165 Commerce Valley Drive West, Markham, Ontario, Canada, a BOMA 360-designated building managed by Northam Realty Advisors Limited and owned by Northam CCPF Tenco (CVD) Limited.

The rest of the winners are:

  • Corporate Facility: Target Northern Campus, Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, a BOMA 360-designated building managed and owned by Target Corporation;
  • Earth: RBC Waterpark Place, Toronto, managed by Oxford Properties Group and owned by 85 Harbour Street Holdings Inc. and CPP Investment Board Real Estate Holdings Inc.;
  • Historical Building: Édifice Sun Life Building, Montreal, a BOMA 360-designated building managed by Bentall Kennedy (Canada) LP and owned by Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada and 1155 Metcalfe Complex LP;
  • Industrial Office Building: Henderson Commerce Center IV Phase III, Henderson, Nevada, managed and owned by Harsch Investment Properties LLC;
  • Medical Office Building: Hoag Health Center Irvine - Sand Canyon, Irvine, California, a BOMA 360-designated building managed by California Commercial Real Estate Services and owned by Shady Creek LLC;
  • Renovated Building: US Bank Tower, Los Angeles, a BOMA 360-designated building managed by Hines and owned by Oue;
  • Retail: Tarzana Village Walk, Tarzana, California, managed by Madison Marquette Retail Services Inc. and owned by Aslan II Tarzana VW LLC;
  • Suburban Office Park Low-Rise: 6100 and 6303 Waterford, Miami, managed by Cushman & Wakefield and owned by MetLife Real Estate; and
  • Suburban Office Park Mid-Rise: Primera Towers I-V, Lake Mary, Florida, a BOMA 360-designated property managed and owned by Parmenter.

2018 BOMA Fellows Honored
Congratulations to the 2018 class of BOMA Fellows, who were celebrated at last night’s TOBY awards banquet in San Antonio. BOMA Fellows have displayed exemplary and sustained contributions to the industry, their profession, the community and BOMA through leadership and service.

Above, the newest Fellows gather on stage. The group includes Mark Dukes, Physicians Realty Trust; Donald J. Fairgrieve-Park, QuadReal Property Group; Brian M. Harnetiaux, McCarthy Cook & Co.; Richard H. Kenwood, Madison Marquette; Peter Merrett, The House of Wonderful; Sheldon S. Oppermann, Compass Properties LLC; Laura T. Ragans, MBRE Healthcare; Andrew J. Romerdahl, Providence St. Joseph Health; Coleen M. Spratt, Colliers International; and Geoffrey M. Wardle, Spink Butler LLP.

Congratulations to the new class!

Meet the New Chair: Brian Cappelli
Brian Cappelli, BOMA Fellow, kicked off his term as 2018-2019 BOMA International Chair on Tuesday night with a lighthearted nod to outgoing chair Rob Brierley’s Boston accent, noting that his own Midwestern inflection would leave the “R” silent in BOMA once more.

Cappelli, who has more than 20 years of experience in commercial real estate, is the vice president of Asset Management at GBX Group LLC, which repurposes real estate assets through transformative projects. He has served two terms as president of BOMA/Greater Cleveland and also spent four years on BOMA Ohio’s Board of Governors. Now he’s ready to tackle the unique challenges of service at the international level.

“From my perspective, as a guy born in Indianapolis, the home of the Indy 500, and who started his career in Detroit, the Motor City, you might find it no surprise that, through our strategic plan, I’m looking for us to kick the organization into high gear and drive engagement of our members,” Cappelli told the packed room at the TOBY Awards ceremony. “Don’t get me wrong—BOMA is already firing on all cylinders! Just look at attendance at this conference as one indicator. But in an era of shortened cycles, constant connectivity and rapid change, it’s more important than ever for folks looking to put their career into overdrive to get involved.”

That goes for BOMA International as an organization too, Cappelli added. Because BOMA is a strategic business partner to the commercial real estate industry, the organization needs to continue staying ahead of industry trends and marketplace changes in order to support members effectively as they deal with the industry’s rapid changes. At the TOBY Awards ceremony Tuesday night, he vowed to focus on the organization’s strategic plan.

“The value proposition of BOMA is its connections,” Cappelli said. “In the next year, I want to know what BOMA means to you and how we can add value.”

Make Plans for BOMA 2019 in Salt Lake City!
We want to thank you for attending BOMA 2018 in San Antonio. Mark your calendar now for the 2019 BOMA International Conference & Expo in Salt Lake City.

Learn more about BOMA 2019.

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