ALBANY, NY — Albany Molecular Research, Inc., recently converted its office and warehouse into a state-of-the-art laboratory for pharmaceutical research. Located near the Pine Bush Preserve, the company placed an emphasis on the laboratory’s design and reducing impact on the environment. To help achieve that goal, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) provided $800,000 to offset added costs associated with the energy-efficient and renewable energy measures for the expansion projects in Albany and at the research center in North Syracuse.

“The programs NYSERDA offers are helping commercial customers, like Albany Molecular Research, save energy and cut costs,” said NYSERDA president William M. Flynn. “The technical and financial assistance available through our New Construction Program lowers the cost of energy efficiency improvements and renewable energy technologies, which are helping Albany Molecular save nearly $140,000 in annual energy costs.”

“One of the greatest challenges of this project was choosing the most cost-effective building technology alternatives,” said David M. Coon, facility director of Albany Molecular. NYSERDA offers technical and financial assistance to evaluate and design energy-efficient and renewable energy options. The customer receives cash back for installing cost-effective electric efficiency measures in new or substantially renovated buildings. Additional incentives are available to make the building “green” by installing renewable technologies.

Albany Molecular and the design team, Friedman Fisher Associates, P.C. of Albany, began the project by working with NYSERDA to evaluate the feasibility of installing a geothermal system at the site. An additional $48,000 was provided for the study through NYSERDA’s Flexible Technical Assistance Program. The actual design of the geothermal system was provided by Malcolm Pirnie, Inc. of Latham. Recommended equipment included:

  • Geothermal system using water below the ground to provide space cooling to the facility while avoiding visual impacts associated with cooling towers in the environmentally sensitive Pine Bush area;

  • Run-around heat recovery system that captures hot or cool air exhausted from the building to pre-condition fresh air being drawn into the building;

  • Primary/secondary hot water pumping for heating; and

  • Variable air volume and supply systems with direct digital controls to optimize the efficiency of the air-handling equipment.

    Additional information on NYSERDA’s programs is available at

    Publication date: 07/01/2002