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News Release

EMC Insurance Companies Wins Regional Award of Merit for Innovations in Sustainability

DES MOINES, Iowa (Dec. 17, 2019)—A 58,800-square-foot office building owned and operated by EMC Insurance Companies at 219 8th Street in downtown Des Moines, Iowa, won a Regional Award of Merit from the U.S. Green Building Council – West North Central Region Chapter for its innovations in sustainability.

“Early in design, we identified sustainability and team member health as our key focus–we wanted the building to be functional, but also provide a beautiful space that people would be attracted to work in,” Bruce Kelley, EMC President and CEO, said. “We’re pleased to be recognized for our efforts in sustainability and innovation.”

The four-story building was designed by BBS Architects | Engineers and was completed in 2017. It was an expansion of EMC’s existing campus of buildings on the same city block. The building includes a wellness facility, collaboration spaces, office spaces and a conference center floor.

Energy efficiency strategies employed in the building include the following:

  • New high-efficiency hot water boilers and water heaters, replacing traditional steam boilers, that provide heating for this and other buildings on EMC’s campus
  • Environmentally friendly heat recovery chilled water plant that allows the building to recoup waste heat and transfer it to incoming services, saving up to 3 million BTUs in annual gas and electric energy input
  • Triple-pane glass curtain wall system that creates a building envelope that is energy efficient while still providing ample daylight and sweeping views throughout the building

Other features of the building that prioritize the health of the building’s occupants include 100% LED lighting, enhanced air quality and filtration, ample views providing connection to the outdoors and a day-lit staircase that encourages occupants to be active throughout the day.

About EMC Insurance Companies

EMC Insurance Companies is among the top 60 property and casualty insurance organizations in the country based on net written premium, with more than 2,400 employees. Employers Mutual Casualty Company (EMCC) was organized in 1911 to write workers’ compensation protection in Iowa. Today, operating under the trade name EMC Insurance Companies, the company provides property and casualty insurance products and services throughout the United States and writes reinsurance contracts worldwide. EMCC is licensed in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. For more information, visit

Sarah Buckley, Assistant Vice President – Community Involvement
Media Contact
EMC Insurance Companies Sarah Buckley, APR
Assistant Vice President – Community Involvement

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