Building Energy Exchange

Our renovation and expansion of Building Energy Exchange (BE-Ex), has transformed the nonprofit center for climate action into a 21st-century paragon for energy efficiency education and knowledge sharing.

people reading BE-Ex exhibition panels

The 5,200 SF project includes a 100-seat, 21st-century classroom, as well as new exhibition and technology demonstration spaces. The completed interior highlights existing historic features, while adding modern, energy-efficient design elements. The new sustainable architecture attempted to maintain as much of the existing fabric of the space with a light touch, restoring the original mahogany doors and extensive marble trim and fireplaces throughout the space. Terrazzo floors were refurbished throughout, adding antiqued bronze plate infills at the trenches where required.

entrance to BE-Ex contrasts with the historic building hallway and a man reads an exhibition panel beyond
BE-Ex is located in the Surrogate’s Court (Hall of Records) building, in lower Manhattan, across from City Hall.
classroom layout through Building Energy Exchange entrance
A new entry vestibule with a large glass door welcomes visitors to the bright, airy expansion.
An open-frame ceiling allows for testing new lighting technologies.

Replacing old infrastructure with new systems to reduce energy impact, a priority of BE-Ex’s mission, was incorporated into the project design. A highly efficient HVAC system replaced old radiators, with new A/V, automated shades, and lighting tied together through an integrated control system.

people gather in the BE-Ex exhibition area
An exhibit room and demonstration room provide additional educational spaces.
people seated attending a presentation at BE-Ex
classroom with green chairs and display panels
Two rooms were combined to create a single flexible classroom space with a new metal mesh ceiling above to provide quality lighting, sound, and acoustics.
Exhibit: Anatomy of an Energy Efficient Building