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Office Depot Opens LEED Pre-Certified Store

office_depot_green_store.jpgOffice Depot has opened its first “Green” store in Austin, TX. The store, pre-certified to LEED standards by the USGBC, will use less energy and water in its daily operations, increase recycling and leave a much smaller overall environmental footprint than the typical store of its size, according to the company.

Office Depot first announced its green building plans in September, 2007.

Office Depot says it is the only office supply retailer participating in the USGBC’s Retail Volume Certification Portfolio Program, a pilot group formed to help retailers achieve LEED-Certification at numerous locations and to facilitate the certification process for a company’s prototype.

The company is the first to have its prototype pre-certified under the USGBC’s LEED for New Construction Volume Certification Program.

The store’s energy efficient features include T5 energy-efficient lighting, which is over 30 percent more efficient than traditional, incandescent lighting, over 50 skylights that adjust with the path of the sun and provide natural light to over 90 percent of the store, and solar panels on the roof.

Retail chains have been working with the USGBC since mid-2006 to test-pilot a new bulk certification program.

REI recently announced that its Boulder, Colorado prototype store has reached the second phase in its expansion and renovation.

Last year, Wal-Mart released results on the energy efficiency of its experimental stores.

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