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ESP December 26, 2014 News

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New program promises savings for old Kansas City buildings

Originally Published in The Kansas City Star
December 26, 2014
By Lynn Horsley

As a resident of the Wornall Plaza condominiums near the Country Club Plaza, Ken Bowman knew well that the building’s ancient boilers and lights were costing a small fortune to maintain.

They needed to be replaced, but the $670,000 cost for upgrades was daunting.

Then Wornall Plaza learned of a new program through Kansas City municipal government that provided low-interest financing. In fact, owners could essentially pay the loan back with the money they would save on their utility bills.

The new boilers, energy-efficient lights and other work have just been completed, and Wornall Plaza is projected to save $34,000 annually, which over time will cover the costs.

“It sounds too good to be true,” acknowledged Bowman, the board treasurer of the co-op at 310 W. 49th St.

But he said it has worked out as promised.

“We’re very happy with it.”

Wornall Plaza was the first Kansas City building to take advantage of the new Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program, but City Council members Scott Wagner and John Sharp said other owners of commercial buildings with aging energy systems should look into what can be a great deal.

“That’s certainly an economic benefit for any business that takes advantage of it,” Wagner said.


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