Through the Chicago PACE program Amped Kitchens received $4.6 million in Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) funding in support of completed energy efficiency work at its recently opened facility in the Belmont-Cragin neighborhood. Amped Kitchens Chicago began its work in 2019 to convert a former Zenith television factory into a 113,000-square-foot facility with 64 kitchens for lease to food manufacturers ranging from mom-and-pop operations to large corporate brands. The initial development was financed with new markets tax credits (NMTCs), including a bridge component that was refinanced with PACE capital. Finance sources included Local Initiatives Support Corporation, Chicago Community Loan Fund, BlueHub Capital, PNC Bank, Southside Community Optimal Redevelopment Enterprise, Consortium America and FirstPathway Partners.
"The Chicago PACE program funding helps Amped recoup the portion of our investment capital that we dedicated to achieving our energy efficiency goals,” said Mott Smith, co-founder of Amped Kitchens.
“Those efficiencies not only keep our costs down long term, they allow us to better support the entrepreneurs and food manufacturers that bring their businesses to Amped Kitchens Chicago,” added Amped Co-founder Brian Albert.”
The PACE financed elements (HVAC, lighting, and water conserving low-flow fixtures) of the Amped Kitchens project will allow the property to save an estimated $13 million in energy savings over the life of the project, a value based on projected electric savings of 201,808 kWh and water conservation of more than 98,112 gallons annually. Directly the project supported more than $4.6 million in energy efficiency work (78 jobs based on American Council for an Energy-Efficiency Economy estimates), while the underlying business (Amped Kitchens) will be home to entrepreneurs and start-ups such as Beyond Meat (a former tenant in LA).
Counterpointe Sustainable Real Estate provided $4.6 million PACE funding for the energy efficient elements of the project. The funding is structured over 25 years and allows the property owner and operator to significantly enhance the economics of its project while avoiding value engineering decisions that would have prevented the build of a top-tier commercial kitchen.