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New Report Unveils the Top U.S. Cities With Green Buildings That Include Coworking

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Commercial real estate buildings are responsible for 16% of all carbon dioxide emissions and 35% of all electricity used in the U.S. — just a few of the reasons why concerns surrounding sustainability have increased in recent years.

Accordingly, facts like these have also prompted large numbers of commercial constructions to adjust and adapt their architecture, design, and amenities in order to better align with eco-friendly practices and pave the way toward a greener future. 

With that in mind, CoworkingCafe — a nationwide coworking space search website that’s part of the Yardi network — recently released a breakdown of the nation’s top cities with the highest numbers of green buildings that include coworking spaces.

The analysis was based on LEED certification data and focused on commercial or mixed-use buildings that had reached one of the four levels of the LEED rating system: Certified, Silver, Gold or Platinum. The certifications serve as a testament to efforts to improve the efficiency of water, energy and waste generation, as well as to promote environmental health.

Coastal States in the Lead: California & Texas Claim Most Green Buildings that Include Coworking

As far as the total number of LEED certified buildings with coworking spaces, California led the race at the state level, followed closely by Texas and New York.

Specifically, coworking spaces were present in 43 green buildings in California, compared to 32 in Texas and 31 in New York. Moreover, California also had the most Platinum level certified buildings that included coworking (five) out of all of the states in the nation. 

New York Logs Highest Number of Green Buildings with Coworking Spaces 

Notably, New York City had almost twice as many LEED certified buildings with coworking spaces as Washington, D.C. did. More precisely, 30 green buildings featured coworking spaces in NYC, making the Big Apple the ultimate leader in the ranking.

Granted, it can be challenging to attain high levels of sustainability in the city due to its congestion and abundance of imposing skyscrapers. Even so, 20 of the 30 LEED buildings in the city with coworking spaces reached the Gold standard, which demonstrates their commitment to green and eco-friendly practices.

Meanwhile, in the nation’s capital, workers can leave a positive imprint on the environment by choosing one of the coworking spaces available in 16 LEED-certified buildings around Washington, D.C. Here, five of these buildings achieved Silver certification, while another 11 earned Gold status, thereby indicating that they had taken additional steps to embrace eco-friendly practices and improve employee wellbeing.

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And, because Washington, D.C. is known for embracing remote and hybrid models — especially among government workers — coworking spaces are certainly popular in the city. In fact, green buildings with flex workspaces made up 21% of the total construction that included coworking here.

Next, San Francisco came in third place in CoworkingCafe’s ranking, with 15 LEED certified buildings that included coworking spaces. Of these, an impressive 12 reached the Gold level of certification. Plus, San Francisco was the only city in the top that had two green buildings with Platinum certifications — 650 California St. and the Salesforce Tower. In both of these buildings, the coworking operator of the flex workspaces was WeWork.

Additionally, 22% of the total buildings with coworking spaces in San Francisco were LEED certified, which was the highest share in the ranking.

Other U.S. cities that made the list in terms of green buildings with coworking spaces were: Atlanta (13); Houston (12); Boston (11); Denver (11); Chicago (10); Miami (8); and Los Angeles (8). 

Regus Has Most Coworking Spaces in Green Buildings, but WeWork Checks Highest Number of Platinum Level Certifications

Regus, WeWork, Industrious, and Spaces are the top coworking operators in the U.S. with the most spaces in LEED-certified buildings. As a matter of fact, the four companies are among the largest and most well-known in the country and have hundreds of coworking spaces in main markets around the country.

However, with 65 such offices in green buildings, Regus was far ahead of WeWork, which recorded 38. Conversely, WeWork had four Platinum certified coworking spaces — twice as many as Regus.

At the same time, Industrious reported that one-fifth (21%) of its total available inventory was housed in LEED certified buildings — the highest percentage among the major coworking operators, as well as three times greater than that of Regus.


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