Verizon Wireless’ green retail store design has achieved pre-certification in the US Green Building Council’s LEED Volume Program.
The communications firm says it is one of only eight retailers in the United States and the only wireless company to achieve precertification from the USGBC.
LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is a program aimed at promoting the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings that deliver environmental, economic and community benefit.
Under the LEED Volume Program, any Verizon Wireless Communication Store built using the precertified design will earn a LEED Silver or higher rating. The company has begun certifying stores under the program, building upon its portfolio of 95 stores rated under the LEED for Commercial Interiors rating system.
Each LEED-certified Verizon Wireless Communications Store is expected to deliver, on average, 12,000 kWh a year of energy savings from lighting and 28,000 gallons a year of water savings, and divert 28 tons of construction waste from landfills, Verizon says.
The LEED Volume Program is part of a wider Verizon energy-reduction commitment that addresses company-operated buildings and network equipment. Taken together, Verizon hopes that these efforts will help it meet a goal of reducing its carbon intensity – the amount of energy used per data flowing through the company’s networks – by 50 percent by 2020, using 2009 as a baseline.
Other companies that are part of the Volume Program include department store giant Kohl’s, and hotel chains Marriott and InterContinental Hotel Group.
Intercontinental’s Green Engage sustainability system won precertification for sustainability initiatives on its existing hotels in January 2011. The chain said it was the first to receive the award for an existing hotels program.
In October last year, Kohl’s became the first US company to earn Gold precertification using the LEED for Retail: New Construction rating system.
At that time, Kohl’s had constructed more than 90 stores using a previous LEED Silver-rated prototype. The company says that relative to its old prototype, the Gold precertified prototype earned additional credits in the areas of interior water use, site selection, alternative transportation, site development and stormwater management. Kohl’s is targeting a total of 500 LEED-certified stores by 2015.
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