The most eco-friendly buildings in NYC

The most eco-friendly buildings in NYC

Mass energy consumption has led to drastic changes in the environment. However, the world requires new business buildings and houses as our population is expanding. That’s where eco-friendliness steps in. Eco-friendly features in real estate have recently got mainstream and are very attractive to investors and buyers. In addition, the development of green building standards has raised awareness of the importance of constructing more environmentally friendly and energy-efficient buildings. Recently, there’s been an influx of so-called green buildings in NYC. So, check out our list of the most eco-friendly buildings in NYC to help you decide on choosing the right one for you.

What does eco-friendly property stand for?

The philosophy behind eco-friendly constructions is that they align with natural features and resources surrounding the property.

A hand painted green holding green leaves.
Eco-friendly changes help the Earth and improve our communities.

The NYC green building law states that all new buildings and reconstruction work that gets city funds must be built according to the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). The LEED has four different rating levels: certified, silver, gold, and the highest platinum. For example, the buildings with basic certification might have got it based on how much construction waste they recycle. On the other hand, getting the platinum certification might mean that the building has more efficient indoor lightning or generates its electricity.

The most eco-friendly buildings in NYC to explore 

2021 has forced many of us to move closer to our families or downsize and become more aware of our surroundings and environment. Not until you start the moving process do you realize how packing a fully stocked apartment looks like. Making small but impactful changes while packing will go a long way. For example, you could start using reusable bins as an excellent green option for your belongings.

As for the apartment search, you’ve come to the right place. Here are the top green buildings in NYC.

  1. The Visionaire
  2. The Greenwich Lane
  3. The Hearst Tower
  4. One World Trade Center
  5. Williamsburg Edge
  6. The Bank of America Tower
  7. The Empire State Building
  8. Perch Harlem – Hamilton Heights
  9. The Toren

The Visionaire

This residential building was the first to get platinum LEED certification. Some of its main features are photovoltaic panelling which converts sunlight into electricity, rainwater collection with a reuse system, a green roof, and filtered air.

Moreover, renting an apartment of about 1600 sqft with floor-to-ceiling windows looking at the Statue of Liberty and Hudson River comes to around $11,500/month if you are interested in prices.

The Greenwich Lane

Greenwich Lane consists of five buildings and five-floor townhouses in West Village. It holds LEED gold certification. Some eco-friendly characteristics are that the constructors used recycled material to build it, a stormwater collection system, highly efficient LED lights, and water-efficient plumbing.

An LED light bulb.
LED light bulbs are more environmentally friendly as they consume less power per unit of light emitted.

The rent for an apartment of 2000 sqft is $25,000. However, the amenities and equipment, such as built-in closets, planted terrace, eat-in windowed kitchen, pool, the doorman, fitness, and wellness centre, really justify the price.

The Hearst Tower

This was the first tower in NYC to receive gold LEED certification, which earned the platinum rating afterwards.

The company is constantly finding ways of saving energy, which has allowed it to reduce its energy usage by 40% since its beginning. The green traits of the Hearst Tower include a composting program and low water usage.

One World Trade Center

The One World Trade Center is the tallest building in the Western Hemisphere which holds gold LEED certification. However, the fascinating fact about this building is that eco-friendly features were incorporated into the architectural design.

For example, the skin of the building used an insulated spandrel. This material allows natural light into the majority of office areas. Having used insulated spandrels allowed them to reduce lighting needs and heating costs and improve the quality of the space. In addition, they used Low-E glass coating for glass enclosure which minimizes heat gain.

Williamsburg Edge

Also known as The Edge, it is a two-tower development with a gold LEED certification. The main characteristics of the towers are energy-efficient walls and windows. The apartments have sensors for lighting in certain areas, the WaterSense fixtures, and Energy Star-rated appliances. Furthermore, the wooden floors and kitchen cabinets are from sustainably harvested wood. And most importantly, they recycled 75% of the waste of construction.

The Bank of America Tower

The Bank of America Tower is LEED platinum-certified. It is a well-known fact that the designers built the property for “biophilia,” a person’s inborn need for connection with the natural environment. That’s why special attention is dedicated to daylight utilization and fresh air.

The Empire State Building

The most emblematic building in the world holds gold LEED certification. Its main eco-friendly features that led to this certification are low-flow fixtures in restrooms, recycled carpets, recycled paper products, green cleaning supplies, etc. Additionally, the building recycles tenant waste and construction waste.

Perch Harlem – Hamilton Heights

According to local relocation specialists from, Perch Harlem is one of the most eco-friendly buildings in NYC. It consumes 80% less energy than a building of a similar size because of its heavily insulated walls and triple-pane windows. These constructions help residents save money on air conditioning and heating costs. In addition, all units include appliances that are Energy Star certified. Apart from this, the building has a virtual doorman, a residents’ lounge, bicycle storage, parking, and an exercise room.

The Toren

This building is in Downtown Brooklyn and holds a gold LEED certification. The Toren has a unique exterior with metal and glass panels. Sustainable features include a rain screen system and a cogeneration plant that supplies tenants with power and water. The amenities here include a fitness centre, 24-hour concierge service, bicycle room, and on-site superintendent.

The price for a penthouse with three bedrooms and three bathrooms of 1450 sqft is $1,896,000.

New York buildings and the Hudson River.
NYC is a great place to go green, and it is continuously improving.


Final thoughts on the most eco-friendly buildings in NYC

Even though we live in an era of improvement and technology, this doesn’t mean we should forget about our planet. On the contrary, with intelligent technology, many renewable energy sources and energy-efficient appliances are now more available than ever. The are many eco-friendly buildings in NYC, and the city offers numerous possibilities for green living, which we encourage everyone to have a try.