In Chicago, Riverside Investment & Development and SaaS provider Cohesion are working together to ensure indoor air quality (IAQ) in several of Riverside’s properties. The companies jointly announced an initiative through which they “are offering the next frontier for technological innovation through building infrastructure that ensures the cleanest air and provides occupants transparency via continuous monitoring to help keep them safe.” They pointed out these capabilities are critical not only for the future of commercial real estate, but also as workers return to their offices soon.
“A year into this pandemic, building occupants are significantly more informed as to how the air they breathe and the surfaces they touch impact their health,” said Thru Shivakumar, Cohesion’s co-founder and chief executive officer. “At the outset of the pandemic, Riverside came to us with the goal to not only create the most forward-thinking IAQ program possible, but also provide a level of transparency that far surpasses the norm. They really care about their building occupants and wanted to be on the leading edge of what defines health and safety in a world permanently changed by Covid.”
Cohesion further explained it is helping landlords provide their spaces are safe, healthy, and ready to welcome back their employees. It is doing so with software that integrates smart controls systems into a single, intelligent, data-driven platform. The technology allows landlords to monitor, control, and automatically improve the air quality throughout their properties.The companies further explained, “Based on performance requirements developed by Riverside for the developer’s award-winning 54-story, 1.2-million-square-foot office building located at 15 N Riverside Plaza, Cohesion created an air-quality control program combining state-of-the-art sensor deployment, app and internet-based display interfaces, and the necessary AI-enabled software to allow command-and-control integration with the building automation systems. This groundbreaking system allowed engineering consultants ESD, Riverside, and Cohesion to jointly win the CoreNet 2020 Innovation Award for Property Management Technology and launch Vayu by Cohesion.”
Riverside’s goal was for the team to complete the necessary software and hardware integrations and beta test this air quality control program at 150 N Riverside within a 4-month period, then immediately deploy the technology to the rest of its 4.3-million-square-foot portfolio. This includes Riverside’s 56-story 110 N Wacker Drive/Bank of America Tower and the soon-to-be-completed 51-story 320 S Canal/BMO Tower building. Now the solution is available for any commercial real estate building. “At Riverside, our top priority is the health and safety of our tenants,” said Anthony Scacco, chief operating officer of Riverside Investment & Development. “When we conceptualized the air quality program we wanted to deliver to our tenants, Cohesion was the ideal partner, given their prior success delivering customized enhancements to the occupant experience. Together, we’ve executed the most forward-thinking program we could conceive of—one which sets a new standard of optimized indoor air quality to both deliver and promote a greater sense of wellness and productivity for all building occupants.”
Designed to integrate an array of building automation systems, tenant communications and touchless access-point data into a single platform, Cohesion’s software provides management teams with an understanding of how their building is functioning. In turn, this improves tenant satisfaction, saves on operating costs, and automates fresh air delivery based on air-quality attributes. Cohesion’s Intelligent Building Platform connects to the building’s existing automation and controls systems to monitor multiple air quality components, including but not limited to carbon dioxide, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), airborne particulates, and outdoor fresh air supply rates. The platform also is able to automatically adjust to the building’s HVAC system to keep the air optimized for healthy conditions. Cohesion stated that deploying its system also enables properties to gain points toward WELL Building Certification.
“Evolving workplace strategies are going to disrupt how and when tenants utilize space,” Shivakumar said. “The demand for cleaner, healthier buildings from tenants is on the rise. There is an expectation that building owners should understand their spaces in ways they never had to before, and Riverside is leading the way in that regard. They know they have to understand the data first and we present an easy way for them to do that.”