Tampa in Technicolor from Above


Aerial of convention center
Annual Sustainability Report

Tampa Convention Center is committed to using more sustainable options to the extent possible.

Following are initiatives that have been completed or are in the planning phase:

Cool Roof

The Center has 17.8 acres of energy-star reflective roof covering to minimize solar heat loading by reflecting infrared energy up and away from the building. This reduces the amount of energy needed for cooling and reduces the “heat island” effect at night.

Daylight Harvesting

The Center practices daylight harvesting to utilize sunlight while turning off lighting during the day. This saves energy and reduces heat that is normally produced by the lighting fixtures. Additionally, the life span of bulbs is extended.

Efficient Chillers

The Center installed two Turbocor Chillers that utilize magnetic bearing technology, allowing electromagnets to “float” the rotating parts. This process reduces energy consumption for air conditioning and eliminates the need for the oil to be changed and disposed of. These units combined to produce 400 tons of cooling capacity.

Electric Vehicle Station

The Center’s garage, through a grant program, has an electric vehicle station for guests to use to help reduce greenhouse emissions. The station is part of the Charge Point America program sponsored by Coulomb Technologies through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and the Transportation Electrification Initiative administered by the Department of Energy. The goal is to provide electric vehicle charging infrastructure to regions in the US and foster the adoption and readiness of EV’s throughout the country.

Energy Management System

The Energy Management System is a computer-based control system, used to monitor and optimize the performance of HVAC systems and lighting in the building. This system utilizes CO2 levels to adjust ventilation, reducing energy consumption and lowering our carbon footprint. The Tampa Convention Center is able to match cooling and heating needs to the varying levels needed for different types of events and the number of people present in the building at the particular time.

Energy Star Partner Energy Star Partner

Energy Star is a Federal EPA program that ranks buildings by their energy consumption compared to others of similar size and use. TCC ranks high at 84 percent of building efficiency as compared with other convention centers. By utilizing green building operations techniques, the Convention Center has been able to optimize energy usage, helping offset power rate increases. Energy Star.gov


The Tampa Convention Center replaced 10 escalators with new, higher energy efficient units that utilize a drive system that consumes 20% less power per unit. Additionally, these units are sealed, require no petroleum lubricants, and are environmentally friendly.

Food & Beverage (F&B) Products

The Center’s F&B program uses paper straws, compostable plastic ware, and recycled paper products at The Sail Plaza.   Recycled paper vessels, napkins and bags are used at all indoor concessions.  Grab-and-go containers are also biodegradable plastic.  Drinks are served in compostable plastic cups and recycled paper cups with plastic lids and straws optional.  A transition plan is in place for the sip cup lid to eliminate the straw option over time.

Food Donations

Unused food that is deemed safe for consumption such as whole fruits and vegetables, bread, bagels, and bottled/canned beverages, is donated to local charities by our in-house Food & Beverage provider.  Please see the Annual Report for program details and the quantity of food donated annually.

Green Paper Products & Supplies Green Paper Products & Supplies

Tissue made from LEED-certified renewable fibers is used in all restrooms along with Green Seal Certified paper towels.  Our lavender hand soap is Safer Choice Certified and our cleaning supply program includes Green Seal Certified, USDA Bio-Based Certified and Safer Choice Certified products. 

HVAC Planned Upgrades
HVAC upgrades slated for 2019-2021 will use fan walls and Variable Frequency Drive (VFD) technology to match airflow to demand. Upgraded electronic controls, and new chilled water valves will allow better control of water flows, reducing power requirements. New coils in Air Handlers will increase heat exchange efficiency, further reducing power costs.

LED Lighting Upgrades

LED lighting was used for recently renovated spaces to lower energy use, maintenance, and heat generation.  Additionally, an ongoing program to replace older lighting technologies with LED lighting is being done. TCC has converted approximately 30 % of the fixtures to LED.  TCC is one of the few convention centers to have LED lighting in the exhibit halls.

Elevator Upgrades

Planned elevator upgrades include the transition from hydraulic drive technology to a newer, more efficient traction drive. This not only will reduce energy consumption, but allows TCC to move away from petroleum-based hydraulic fluid.

All coatings and paints used are low Volatile Organic Contaminant (VOC) materials.

Hydration Stations  Hydration Stations

Two water cooler/filling station combinations have replaced existing traditional fountains to evaluate the maintenance requirements and collect consumer comments on usability. In addition to encouraging tap water use, the stations provide a more efficient water transfer mechanism for filling containers, resulting in less water wastage and energy loss. The stations feature energy-efficient refrigeration systems and help offset the disposal of plastic water bottles.

Material Donations

We encourage and make it easy for clients to donate excess materials such as show bags, paper, notepads, office supplies, fun promotional items, and anything else a student, teacher or family could use to the Hillsborough Education Foundation Teaching Tools program & Habitat for Humanity Hillsborough Restore.


The Center has recycling containers both within and outside the building for food and beverage packaging and bottles. Additionally, we recycle large volumes of cardboard using our City recycling compactor.

Renewable Energy

The Center’s Boat Docks have converted to solar lighting.  Photo Voltaic cells charge the batteries during the day that operate the LED lights at night. The main security lighting uses motion sensors increasing the light level from 25% to 100% upon approach, and both the main dock and finger piers have solar marker lights outlining the perimeter making them visible to boaters.

Window Film

Low emissivity window film has been installed on westward facing meeting rooms and other heavy solar exposure areas throughout the building lower UV and IR loading, thereby reducing the cooling load. Additionally, this film is safety-rated for hurricane conditions.

See the City of Tampa’s full Annual Sustainability Report

Updated: 06/03/2022