2015 Finalist: The Smooth Operator

The most improved building across multiple sustainability categories achieved solely through improved operations and maintenance and/or retrocommissioning.

Who led the charge

 Saverio Grosso                                     Vice President, Eneractive Solutions


With over 15 years of experience in the energy engineering and consulting industry, Saverio has managed on-site commissioning, testing, troubleshooting, balancing and analysis for a wide range of HVAC equipment and systems. Saverio has identified and implemented major energy saving measures for his customers, published articles on retro-commissioning, and delivered multi-day training seminars. Often selected by organizations such as NREL and the Department of Energy to share his expertise, Grosso’s dedication to the energy industry earned him the 2011 Urban Green Service Award and the 2012 Energy Engineer of the Year award from NY Chapter of AEE.


  • Take a stepped approach                                     
  • Systematically identify the issues                         
  • Start with a thorough audit                                    
  • Focus on the re-commissioning issues and challenges

Sustainability and Patient Comfort Show Big Improvement at New York Hospital


For the sustainability team at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC), the objective was more profound than just reducing energy consumption: It must improve the comfort of patients receiving chemotherapy.

MSKCC’s Energy Manager Robert Berninger, a proactive champion of energy efficiency and sustainability, led the charge for a six-month ASHRAE Level II Energy Audit in parallel with building-wide retro-commissioning, to develop, quantify and qualify energy conservation projects. Simultaneously, the team devised corrective actions to optimize building operations, including the calibration of Variable Air Volume (VAV) sensors and HVAC system repair.

Since the building is a functioning outpatient center, the team had to coordinate all work with both the building and nursing staffs. To ensure uninterrupted patient care, "we completed much of the systems adjustments during off-hours and overnight shifts," says Saverio Grosso, Vice President at Eneractive, the energy consulting firm partnering with the hospital.

As a result, maintenance work orders have decreased. "The remediation has saved MSKCC upwards of $70k (annually) in maintenance costs," says Grosso.

Most importantly, MSKCC has reached its loftiest goal–improving the care of cancer patients.


"A collaboration among building’s operators, controls contractor and my HVAC team resulted in a great success."
–Robert Berninger


CLOSE UP: Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Sidney Kimmel Center for Prostate & Urologic Cancers

What did we do?
This six-month ASHRAE Level II Energy Audit, which was conducted in parallel with building-wide retro-commissioning, pinpointed energy conservation projects.

Why we did it: 
The energy savings. The cancer center also improved system operation while improving comfort for the patients.

Our Approach: 
The retro-commissioning identified "anemic areas" of system performance and we developed corrective actions to optimize building operations.



  • Project successfully addressed ongoing patient-comfort issues
  • MSKCC has saved upwards of $70k annually in maintenance costs