Frequently Asked Questions

Who participates and how many participants are there?

The Challenge is open to the entire City of Chicago, so commercial offices and buildings of all sizes are welcome to participate. Offices and buildings outside City of Chicago limits can participate but will not be eligible for awards at the end of the program year. In Round 3, over 150 downtown Loop-area businesses, and 1,000 individuals participated in the Challenge.

Can non-commercial office spaces participate?

We welcome participation of retail, educational, and other spaces, though the Challenge activities are specifically developed with commercial spaces in mind.

How long will Round 4 run?

Round 4 of the Challenge kicks off on September 2014 and will continue through April 2015, when we will announce the awards and winners.

How much does it cost to participate?

Participation is free, and open to everyone.

Can businesses or property managers with multiple locations participate?

Yes. Each location will enroll separately.

Can people in my company collaborate as a team?

Yes. You can work in teams with an unlimited number of collaborators. Each team member can have their own GreenPSF login to access the application.

Can I participate as both a building and a tenant?

We realize that some property managers also manage an office within the building, and we'd like to welcome you to participate as both property manager and tenant. You will receive recognition for both types of participation at the end of the program year.

How do I know if I'm the admin? How do I invite and manage other participants in my company?

If you are the admin of a company or building, you will see additional information about the company and other participants in the Property or Space Access menu when logged in. You are free to make anyone else in your company an admin so they also have editing and approval powers.

How does the Challenge support participant success?

The Knowledge Center contains a wealth of information related to all of the activities released thus far, as well as other relevant topics. We are always happy to answer questions - contact our team at 312-651-4341 or

How many and what types of activities are in the Challenge in Round 4?

Round 4 of the Challenge consists of over 50 activities in seven categories: Energy, Water, Waste, Purchasing, Transportation, Outreach, and Innovation.

If we already have an activity in place in our office, can we receive points?

Activities should be completed during the Challenge period, however, Round 4 of the Challenge offers opportunities for offices to not only earn points for implementing new strategies, but also for actively improving, expanding, or educating on existing sustainability efforts.

How will I know the latest news related to the Challenge?

We communicate through a variety of modes. After registering you will begin receiving our monthly e-newsletter, which includes upcoming events, participant highlights and shoutouts, as well as other relevant and interest news. We also encourage you to follow us on social media to have even more fun and get up-to-date news: @ChiGreenOffice and on Chicago Green Office Challenge on Facebook.

What kind of events will there be this year?

We will be hosting monthly lunch-and-learn training events to help you successfully implement sustainable office practices and networking events to connect you with like-minded businesses throughout Chicago. Events will be announced in our monthly e-newsletter.

How will you determine success and awards in the Challenge?

Participants will be awarded based on both points earned and measured reductions in energy, water and waste.

How does the Challenge relate to the Retrofit Chicago's Commercial Buildings Initiative?

Retrofit Chicago's Commercial Buildings Initiative is a voluntary program to accelerate energy efficiency, resulting in increased asset value, lower operating costs, economic development, and lower greenhouse gas emissions

Mayor Emanuel has identified energy efficiency as a citywide priority to save money, create jobs, and reduce negative environmental impact, and the Challenge is a tool for property managers to improve operating efficiencies, increase building value and tenant retention and earn recognition for efforts.

The Challenge directly furthers six of the City of Chicago's economic and environmental goals as laid out in the Sustainable Chicago 2015 Action Agenda:

  • Improve city-wide energy efficiency by 5%; decrease water use by 2% annually
  • Increase access to recycling; improve policies to promote waste reduction
  • Reduce carbon emissions from all sectors
  • Accelerate the economy in Chicago by assisting people and companies in adopting sustainable practices
  • Increase average daily transit ridership
Challenge Administrator
(312) 651-4341
Software Support
Micaela Stump
Information Manager
Green Per Square Foot
(312) 595-8044