REI announced plans to open its second prototype green building store in Round Rock, Texas, later this year. The first opened in 2007 at the University Oaks Shopping Center in Boulder, CO. “Boulder helped bring our commitment to the next level, representing a new REI standard for sustainability,” said Brain Unmacht, REI’s senior VP of sales. “Round Rock will build on that even further.”The new store, which will be designed by Gensler, who also designed the first store, will use natural lighting and energy efficient systems, solar hot water, sustainable materials and water reduction measures. It will also feature a mezzanine level devoted to the local community by connecting co-op members and customers to resources for regional recreation, outdoor and conservation clubs, and service projects to help protect the local environment.
REI first announced its prototype initiative in May 2006. The company has long had a strong reputation for commitment to sustainable initiatives and has even handed out brochures to customers of its CSR report.