October 9, 2021 • Linda K. Monroe

"Marked by superiority or distinction; excellent; distinguished.” These definitions of the term “outstanding” are more than merely fundamental descriptions of the 17 victors in BOMA International’s The Outstanding Building of the Year® (TOBY®) Awards program this year. Behind each of the 2021 award recipients is a property team that goes above and beyond in their approach to caring for the physical environments they oversee, as well as the tenants housed within each facility. Their extra effort, care and ingenuity has set these property teams apart as industry leaders who excel in key areas of commercial real estate operations and management, and demonstrate a distinct commitment to their craft, tenants and buildings—one that is nothing short of outstanding.

The following properties are the 2021 BOMA International TOBY Awards winners that were recognized during the ceremony at the 2021 BOMA International Conference & Expo in Boston in early October. Look also to the digital edition of the 2021 TOBY Awards Program Guide for a complete listing of the 61 nominees that first won at the local and regional level before competing in Boston.


Seattle Municipal Tower
Seattle, Washington

Managed by CBRE
Owned by City of Seattle

A major component of Seattle’s downtown civic campus, Seattle Municipal Tower is a 63-story, 1.2 million-square-foot, Class A office tower, which when purchased by the city in 1996, became the new headquarters for most of its previously dispersed departments. In 2003, the building underwent a major renovation to create a more pedestrian-friendly environment and now features two art galleries with rotating exhibits, as well as variety of retail offerings. The facility’s management team works proactively with the city of Seattle’s administration, employees and tenants through surveys and frequent communication to develop building policies, procedures and action plans—especially important during the COVID-19 pandemic when quarterly Zoom and phone customer service check-ins kept building occupants fully informed of the facility’s status quo. With respect to energy efficiency and sustainable operations, the property’s staff benchmarks performance through ENERGY STAR® Portfolio Manager®—its most recent score is 90—and compost and recycled waste management diverted approximately 77,600 kilograms of greenhouse gas emissions in 2020.




353 North Clark
Chicago, Illinois

Managed by CBRE
Owned by Heitman

Located in one of Chicago’s most sought-after neighborhoods, 353 North Clark is an ultra Class A office tower stretching across 1.3 acres. With floor plates averaging 28,000 square feet of column-free space and cantilevered corners that maximize views throughout its 45 stories, the BOMA 360-designated 353 North Clark features two vibrant green roofs that harvest rainwater and act as visual bookends on its rooflines. The property was certified LEED® Core and Shell Gold upon its delivery in 2009 and was among the first buildings in Chicago to utilize a wirelessly controlled building automation system. Today, building occupants still benefit from exceptional tenant comfort, with 96 percent reporting satisfaction with the property’s indoor environmental quality in an early 2020 survey. A robust recycling program diverts approximately 29 percent of all waste from landfills; food waste from the building’s café is processed on-site via vermicomposting to create natural fertilizer for exterior landscaping use; and an urban beekeeping facility on the third-floor green roof pollinates local fauna. Recently recertified with LEED Operations and Maintenance Platinum recognition, 353 North Clark also received a WELL Health-Safety Seal in 2021.




Queen’s Quay Terminal
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Managed by Northam Realty Advisors Ltd.
Owned by Northam CCPF II Tenco (QQT) Ltd.; 10954594 Canada Inc.

This iconic BOMA 360-designated building has a storied past that begins with its inception in 1926 as a marine terminal and cold storage warehouse. In 1983, Queen’s Quay Terminal became one of Toronto’s first conversions of a former industrial building into an elegant 594,265-square-foot mixed-use property, which preserved the building’s original eight-floor structure while adding four floors of condominium apartments. To remain true to the building’s history, while evolving with the ever-changing workplace landscape, its property team ensures that specialized maintenance and architectural sensitivity take precedence in all renovation, restoration and retrofit projects. The team also uses a variety of strategies and integrated approaches to maximize tenant engagement, mainly leading by example as they share performance results, new equipment upgrades and innovations. Now home to a range of office, retail and condo tenants, Queens Quay Terminal maintains its historical integrity and remains a fixture of the Toronto landscape—leaving an impressive legacy as one of the city’s most enduring landmarks.




1001 North Greenfield Parkway
Garner, North Carolina

Managed by Duke Realty
Owned by Duke Realty LP

The 151,624-square-foot 1001 North Greenfield is a single-story industrial building situated in a beautifully landscaped Class A industrial park, which features native plants that reduce water consumption; paved walkways for exercise and outdoor enjoyment; and abundant wildlife in its natural wooded and pond areas. Outdoors, 36 truck bays with 9x10-foot manual overhead doors and two drive-in ramps with 12x14-foot motor-operated doors allow for efficient loading and offloading. Indoors, the warehouse provides spacious 50x50-foot column spacing and 32-foot clear height. The fully occupied warehouse space houses 4 tenant companies, all of which enjoy custom layouts fitted to their unique needs. The layouts include sales rooms, offices, break rooms and conference and collaboration areas. In response to COVID-19, the management team developed a comprehensive pandemic plan, and offered guidance resources to tenants on maintaining essential business operations. This effort bridged a gap between traditional business continuity plans and the specialized strategies needed at that time.




1128 Hornby
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Managed by Wesgroup Properties
Owned by Wesgroup Properties

128 Hornby, also known as Three Bridges Community Health Centre, is a nearly 45-thousand-square-foot medical office building. It’s occupied by Vancouver Coastal Health’s more than 800 employees and the thousands of patients who are seen there annually. Originally completed in 1985 and extensively renovated after it was vacated in 2017, the building also boasts a BOMA 360 designation. The owner/manager company has developed an annual tenant communications and engagement plan for its managed portfolio, and property managers are required to select and host a minimum of three initiatives each year, many of which focus on sustainability. In this regard, a fully green-certified cleaning products line is employed, as well as significant waste reduction and recycling programs. In relation to the pandemic, property professionals positioned informative and directional signage in all common areas and elevators; upgraded filtration systems to MERV 15; and increased cleaning of high touchpoint areas and placed hand sanitizing stations in all common areas.




The Curtis
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Managed by Keystone Property Group
Owned by Keystone Property Group

Once home to The Saturday Evening Post, The Curtis completed a dramatic transformation into a true mixed-use destination in 2018, while still honoring its rich legacy. Today, the 912,245-square-foot building tenancy includes thriving office and life science space, retail and public events space, as well as The Lyndon, a collection of 63 high-style apartments. As part of the owner and management company’s Keystone Cares initiative, employees volunteer and participate in a number of community events; The Curtis serves the area with building-specific initiatives, too. The five-year redevelopment of The Curtis is considered the centerpiece of a wider plan to reposition historic workspaces and iconic buildings throughout Philadelphia’s Center City. The Curtis prides itself on a corporate philosophy of “Building Culture”—a motto that denotes property management’s dedication to create dynamic workplaces with collaborative environments and unrivaled amenities. The team believes this philosophy promotes employee productivity and provides a holistic live-work-play experience for occupants. This sense of camaraderie is further heightened through excellent communication. Altogether, the result is a mixed-use destination that is an enduring landmark of commerce and culture in Philadelphia.




Harold Washington Library Center
Chicago, Illinois

Managed by CBRE
Owned by City of Chicago

Comprising 11 stories and 756,000 square feet of space, the Harold Washington Library Center (HWLC) is the largest public library in the northern hemisphere and an active main hub for 81 Chicago Public Library branches throughout the city. In the early months of the pandemic, the property team rolled out a five-phase program with established policies for reopening and continuing to ensure the safety of all those entering the building’s doors. In addition to assisting library departments and staff in operational areas and addressing COVID-related concerns, the property management team places a high priority on energy reduction—essential in this all-electric building. This included system overhauls and upgrades, relamping and water-conserving restroom fixtures. Air and water testing performed at least twice annually, along with a comprehensive environmental and regulatory adherence program, ensures a healthy, safe and green environment for patrons, employees, guest and vendors. In the fall of 2020, HWLC’s very own student artists from the city’s YOUmedia program collaborated with professional artists to create colorful murals to help transform Chicago into a landscape of eternal hope and blossoming change.




401 Park
Boston, Massachusetts

Managed by Samuels & Associates
Owned by Samuels & Associates

For nearly sixty years, 401 Park served as a warehouse and distribution center. After being vacant for more than a decade, the site was redeveloped, renovated and reopened in the fall of 2000 as The Landmark Center. Now, it’s a more than one-million-square-foot mixed-use project consisting of an eight-story main structure and featuring a 200-foot tall, 14-story tower. The building was redeveloped by Samuels & Associates, becoming the epitome of industrial chic, and renamed 401 Park in 2019 following a two-year renovation, rehabilitation and modernization that began in 2017. By capitalizing on the property’s unique exposed beams, metal siding, steel and a monochromatic color scheme, modern aesthetics and features effortlessly combine with its past to retain its landmark status on the National Register of Historic Places. To keep tenants safe as part of the redevelopment project, several security measures were implemented, including a fully functioning, site-wide security operations command center. Major utility relocations, as well as new penetrations throughout main levels of the building, required precise coordination and cooperation, and contractors worked around the clock while adhering to noise restrictions in the 95 percent-occupied building. To ensure tenants felt appreciated for such cooperation, the property team hosted a series of events designed to show their gratitude. And, during this time, 401 Park achieved a number of recognitions, including a recertification to LEED Gold. Its TOBY Award victory is a major milestone for the host city of Boston: 401 Park is BOMA/Boston’s first BOMA International TOBY Award winner since 1996.




10 Dundas East
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Managed by BentallGreenOak (Canada) LP
Owned by 10 Dundas Street Ltd.

Approximately 800,000 customers visit the multilevel, 331,531-square-foot 10 Dundas East urban center each month to enjoy its many restaurant, entertainment, retail and health service venues. Continued enjoyment of the property is due in no small part to the management team’s constant review of existing programs and evolving technology. They strive to offer the most up-to-date services available in the retail industry, including a web-enabled workflow system that allows operations staff to effectively schedule and track mechanical maintenance. Its extensive environmental management program addresses such issues as indoor air quality and the presence of mold, waste, and other hazardous materials to keep the property safe. 10 Dundas East’s detailed pandemic response plan covers everything from cleaning protocols and supply procurement to cross-training staff and coordinating with vendors. The property also employs a robust social media program to keep customers engaged and well-informed.




Shops of Oakville South
Oakville, Ontario, Canada
Managed by FCR Management Services LP
Owned by Shops of Oakville South Inc.

The Shops of Oakville South is a fully occupied single-story retail complex made up of 25 tenants in six brick buildings. The complex provides important amenities to the surrounding population, and it also gives back to the community, supporting education in the arts, as in its corporate sponsorship of the Ontario College of Art & Design University (OCAD U). Regular newsletters, known as “Tenant Talks,” provide essential information to tenants, and a tenant work order and preventive maintenance system is supplemented by a 24-hour emergency call center. In addition, annual satisfaction surveys evaluate tenants’ perceptions and experiences—important steps that retain existing tenants and attract new ones. The property management team also leads a quarterly series about sustainable best practices that can be easily implemented in daily life to improve the environmental footprint of the facility. As a result of their focus on energy conservation, the Shops of Oakville South was awarded LEED Gold certification in 2018, among other recognitions.




1-8 Prologis Boulevard
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada

Managed by Triovest Realty Advisors Inc.
Owned by Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP) Realty Inc.

Serving close to 1,400 professionals across 12 organizations, 1-8 Prologis Boulevard is a BOMA 360-designated and LEED Gold-certified building comprised of nearly 400,000 square feet. The building prioritizes environmental stewardship through programs and features that include a green wall, showers, bicycle storage, electric vehicle charging stations, a data analytics platform, full tenant submetering and a high-capacity cleaning system that eliminates the need for chemicals as it mixes water and oxygen to create aqueous ozone. In 2020, the property management team increased its already effective communications with a renewed focus on tenant engagement. This included supplying each tenant with hand sanitizers, elevator button and door opener tools and guidance for reentry. Standards and procedures are in place throughout all areas of operations to ensure the property team consistently adheres to industry best practices for energy management and conservation, while reducing each building’s overall environmental footprint. Energy management is achieved through ongoing inspections, assessments, monthly consumption monitoring and monthly reviews of performance issues identified by the data analytics platform.




SouthCreek Corporate Centre
Markham, Ontario, Canada

Managed by Northam Realty Advisors Ltd.
Owned by Northam CCPF Tenco (Commerce Valley Drive) Ltd.

Stretching across more than one million square feet of space, the BOMA 360-designated six-building SouthCreek Corporate Centre features a modern design with a bold street presence, high-quality exterior and interior finishes and 10 perimeter offices per floor. The property team’s focus on community includes a commitment to maintaining a live/work/play experience for all visitors and collaborating with colleagues involved in their company’s Greater Toronto Area office portfolio to collectively raise awareness and funds for important local, national and international causes. They also strive to build lasting relationships with their more than 30 tenants. Through various communication strategies, appreciation events, satisfaction surveys and efficient care and maintenance of the buildings, the team ensures an environment in which tenants can thrive. Throughout the past three years, measurable results demonstrate reductions in energy and improved performance, including such exemplary ENERGY STAR® scores of 100, 87 and 85. In June 2020, a comprehensive outdoor air analysis report was commissioned to provide a strategy to maximize outside air delivery and reduce air recirculation in each building. A portfolio-wide indoor air quality monitoring plan also compares each building’s indoor environmental conditions to industry guidelines to ensure tenant wellness.




3300 Paramount Parkway
Morrisville, North Carolina

Managed by Trinity Partners
Owned by Perimeter Park Offices, LP

3300 Paramount Parkway offers nearly 98,000 rentable square feet and is located in the heart of the area’s Perimeter Park. It is 92% leased to tenants specializing in data security, home building and biopharmaceuticals. The building is surrounded by abundant green space; comfortable outdoor seating and patio areas; seven miles of beautiful walking trails; and lush landscaping that incorporates materials native to the Southern United States. The property team’s approach to supporting a healthy, safe and fun environment includes meeting with tenants frequently to promote an open dialogue and offering such conveniences as an electronic work order system that tracks the progress of service requests. In addition to standard pandemic-related initiatives, the team has made an extra effort to install NanoSeptic covers on elevator buttons and touch-free door pulls, increase fresh air intake, regularly conduct building flushes and upgrade touchpoint cleaning. Their commitment to emergency preparedness isn’t limited to the pandemic. In fact, the property team has contracted a third-party disaster recovery company to provide prompt remediation should their services ever be needed. They are also proactive about reducing the building’s overall carbon footprint, as they have implemented comprehensive waste management and green cleaning programs.



100,000-249,999 SQUARE FEET

511 EJC
Irving, Texas

Managed by Crescent Property Services
Owned by Codina Partners

Designed with modern taste in mind, one wouldn’t guess that 511 EJC is four decades old. The 160,000-square-foot building gives a feeling of space, boasting features like lush greens, a private parking garage and an LED lighting system. Community is also integral to the experience at EJC. When the Crescent Property Services management team took over the building, they met individually with each tenant to discuss how they could work together to be more effective in the community. This strategy has been met with a tremendous amount of support and appreciation, allowing smaller, less active organizations to be part of contributions they never could be part of before. In addition, a customer enrichment program offers year-round events, informative resources and activities to enhance the feeling of community at 511 EJC. With respect to green initiatives, property professionals employ waste management and recycling programs; environmentally preferable lamp disposal and purchasing policies; sustainable landscape, storm water and integrated pest management practices; and green cleaning. A written business continuity plan includes training drills, weekly emergency equipment tests, an emergency evacuation procedures guide, a floor warden program and quarterly lunch-and-learn gatherings.



250,000-499,999 SQUARE FEET

745 Thurlow
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Managed by QuadReal Property Group LP
Owned by 2748355 Canada Inc.; 745 Thurlow Street Holdings Inc.

With 100 percent occupancy among its 15 high-profile tenants, 745 Thurlow is a striking 25-story, 400,000-square-foot tower designed to LEED® Core and Shell Gold standards in 2015. In addition to boasting a BOMA 360 designation, the building holds LEED EB: O+M Platinum, Fitwel, WiredScore Gold and Rick Hansen Foundation Accessibility certifications. Industry-leading programs include vegetated green roofs, rainwater collection, extensive submetering and an integrated smart building system Passionate about supporting small businesses in the community, the building management team works with local companies whenever possible, whether it be videographers, musicians, caterers, or others. One of their top management priorities is to develop and preserve strong tenant relationships through numerous forms of communication. Regular surveys gauge tenant satisfaction to improve performance, increase retention, maximize portfolio value and achieve operational excellence. In 2018, the team received a Kingsley Associates’ overall satisfaction rating of 100 percent. To continuously improve performance, corporate energy reduction targets are reviewed annually. Presently, property management’s ongoing energy conservation target is to achieve a 2 percent year-over-year reduction in energy use.




333 Bush LLC
San Francisco, California

Managed by Tishman Speyer
Owned by 333 Bush LLC

333 Bush, comprising 721,331 square feet within its 44 stories, continues to evolve with the latest innovations, sustainable features and amenities that delight tenants and enhance the property. The property team of the BOMA 360-designated building has a vision to maintain a welcoming and safe environment, which included maintaining an on-site presence throughout pandemic shutdowns. In fact, ZO., a trademarked suite of amenities designed to improve tenants’ quality of life through tenant-only services, experiences and discounts, was further tailored to meet evolving tenant needs during the pandemic. A comprehensive sustainability program educates tenants about sorting, diverting and disposing items to ensure waste reduction plan goals are met. In 2019, the property management rolled out its zero-waste initiative to achieve zero landfill waste. The 333 Bush team also is committed to using advanced systems and educating tenants to conserve energy. Highlights of recent achievements include: increasing its ENERGY STAR score by 18 points to 91 in only 16 months; earning LEED Platinum recertification in 2020; hiring a strategic partner to help improve operational efficiency and achieve savings; and installing more efficient lighting.




150 North Riverside
Chicago, Illinois

Managed by CBRE
Owned by 150 North Riverside Titleholder, LLC

150 North Riverside is a BOMA 360-designated building that rises on the eastern edge of a two-acre site on the Chicago River’s west bank. Although the 54-story tower features approximately 1.2 million square feet of leasable office space, it only encompasses 25 percent of the lot due to a unique superstructure design; the remaining 75 percent of the site features a 1.5-acre public park, amphitheater and riverwalk. The skyscraper is steps away from one of Chicago's busiest commuter train stations, as well as the Chicago French Market, the city’s only year-round, indoor food marketplace. 150 North Riverside has a strong focus on sustainability and wellness. Initiatives and best practices in these areas include: green cleaning; hazardous waste and asbestos management; indoor air quality testing and calibration; air purification; and water management and energy conservation. In addition to a BOMA 360 designation, the building also received LEED Core and Shell Gold certification and, earlier this year, it earned both the WELL Platinum Certification and the WELL Health-Safety Rating.

The Home Depot Pro is the official sponsor of the 2021 TOBY® Awards program and banquet.


Linda K. Monroe, a freelance writer and editorial project manager, was the former editorial director at BUILDINGS magazine from 1981-2008.