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The Palace Theatre Albany, N.Y.

The Palace Theatre, a grand cultural and entertainment facility in the heart of downtown Albany, first opened its doors in October, 1931, during the middle of the Great Depression. The largest theatre in a city already noted for a number of opulent movie houses, the Palace Theatre stands today as the sole survivor of this period and continues to make history with a diverse offering of popular acts and cultural events.

Energy Efficiency Profile

After connecting at a local Chamber of Commerce networking event, Palace Theatre staff invited RISE Engineering to conduct an energy assessment of the building's lighting system. RISE identified and recommended lighting improvements, arranged installation, and helped make this energy-efficiency retrofit project affordable by working with National Grid on financial incentives and by coordinating third-party financing.


This landmark, city-owned theatre was becoming difficult to maintain due to negative cash flow. The city was considering selling or closing the building..


  • Upgraded over 8,000 incandescent lamps and other lighting fixtures to high-efficiency LED, including 4,000 specialty lamps on the building marquee
  • Ensured new LED fixtures were compatible with the pre-existing dimming controls
  • Identified third-party financing to make the project even more cost-effective for the city


  • An estimated $50,000 in annual electricity savings
  • Over $10,000 in annual maintenance savings
  • The city was able to keep the building
  • The theatre is open and projected to be profitable for the first time in several years
  • Significant local media coverage, including press events with Albany’s mayor and reps from the Palace Theatre, National Grid and RISE Engineering


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