General Motors unveiled a $15 million green dealership outside of Detroit today, AdAge reports.
The 64,000-square-foot dealership, owned by LaFontaine Automotive Group, taps into natural resources for its new building.
The Buick-Pontiac-GMC and Cadillac facility has installed 85 skylights along with doors made of corncobs and wheat made. The dealership uses rainwater for landscape irrigation and 85 percent of its car-wash water is recycled. The building has a geothermal heating and cooling system, with 64 in-ground wells that capture energy stored in the earth.
Two years ago because the dealership was outgrowing its old location it decided to “go green” with its new building, and spent an extra $2 million for that and for the LEED Gold certification.
The dealership expects to recoup the costs in five or six years, instead of the original 11 years, thanks to over 50 percent energy savings.
The first dealership awarded LEED Gold certification was a Toyota’s dealership in Rockwall, Texas in May. Toyota also plans to make 10 percent of its dealerships green by 2011.
General Motors is adding what it claims is the world’s largest rooftop solar power installation to its car assembly plant in Figueruelas, Zaragoza, Spain. When the project is completed in the fall of 2008, 85,000 solar panels will cover about 2,000,000 sq. ft. of roof at the plant.