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The MD-PACE Program approves Benninghaus Road warehouse facility rehabilitation | Maryland Commercial PACE



January 7th, 2021


The MD-PACE Program is pleased to announce the approval of retroactive C-PACE financing for a warehouse facility located on Benninghaus Road, Baltimore. Benninghaus Road is the second property to utilize C-PACE to refinance improvements recently installed in the facility. Greenworks Lending, a national C-PACE lender with a large presence in Maryland, is the capital provider on the transaction.


The improvements to the Benninghaus Road property consist of highly efficient HVAC units and accompanying roof alterations, and a new insulated roof to reduce heat loss. Heating and cooling represent significant operating costs for commercial property owners, so reducing heat loss and inexpensively maintaining optimum temperatures can be important for controlling operating expenses. In comparing the energy efficiency of furnaces, experts often use Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency (AFUE) as a metric. The industry standard for furnace AFUE is 80%, meaning that in using a set amount of energy to heat a structure, one fifth is not converted into heat and is lost. The model used in Benninghaus has a AFUE of 95%, so the energy it consumes will be used in almost its entirety to heat the property. Combined with the insulated roof upgrade, the storage facility will be operating at much greater efficiency and preventing financial loss in all seasons.


Greenworks Lending, a C-PACE lender based in Darien, CT, provided $168,139.18 in C-PACE financing for this project. Operating in the Maryland market from its office in downtown Bethesda, Greenworks has provided C-PACE for more than a dozen projects in 2020. Michael Billingsley, Mid-Atlantic Director for Greenworks Lending, said about the Benninghaus project, “Greenworks Lending is pleased to partner with Suntrail Energy on a third transaction in 2020. We applaud the Baltimore C-PACE program for allowing property owners to recapitalize their assets for eligible C-PACE improvements, which will continue to aid commercial properties through the challenging current economic climate and will benefit the property well into the post pandemic era.”


Retroactive C-PACE is a newer utilization of C-PACE financing and is available in a handful of programs nationwide. As of this writing, twelve of the thirty-seven states with C-PACE enabling legislation also allow retroactive C-PACE financing. In the Maryland market, retroactive C-PACE is available in the City of Baltimore and Prince George’s County, though there is hope that this feature of C-PACE financing may be expanded throughout the state. Using C-PACE to refinance previously completed projects enables a wider range of property owners to benefit from the long-term financing and fixed rate interest that C-PACE permits, and rewards property owners who have made energy efficient improvements to their commercial asset. This flexibility allows cash to be freed up in challenging times, such as during the current pandemic. Whether accessed before or after the installation of eligible improvements, C-PACE can be relied upon by commercial property owners to reduce energy use, improve cash flow, and defer costs for projects.


About the MD-PACE Program

The MD-PACE program is sponsored by the Maryland Clean Energy Center (MCEC), a corporate instrumentality of the state of Maryland which advances the adoption of clean energy, energy efficiency products, services and technologies. MCEC leverages private capital to help homeowners, businesses, and government entities reduce energy costs. The MD-PACE program offers C-PACE financing to commercial property owners statewide.


About Greenworks Lending:

Greenworks Lending is the largest provider of Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) financing in the country. Led by several of the industry’s founding policy developers and standard-setters, Greenworks Lending is a private capital provider uniquely dedicated to funding commercial real estate through C-PACE. Greenworks has provided financing to hundreds of commercial properties and is active in 25 states. Greenworks Lending’s C-PACE financing makes clean energy a smart financial decision for commercial property owners.