There's been a lot of news about global warming lately and how we're all contributing to that. But now a
The developer, Matt O’Reilly, tells KOLR10 News he wants to send a message to the construction industry that going green does pay off in the end. He's getting that message out through a new shopping center in
O’Reilly’s sporting equipment store, Dynamic Earth, is outgrowing its current location, but current construction in the city didn't fit what he thought should be the model for environmentally conscious. So, he decided to become the developer of his own center.
"If anyone is going to do it green, then the outdoor store should." says O’Reilly.
By November, Dynamic Earth and four other retailers will be tenants of what O'Reilly calls the most environmentally-friendly shopping center to ever be built in the country. Called "Green Circle," the center will feature a roof that sucks in rainwater for the bathrooms, 100 percent recycled carpets and energy saving windows.
Shoppers will also find less parking there. That's because O'Reilly says there's more than enough in the adjacent church lot.
"The greenest material you can use is none at all." says O’Reilly.
O'Reilly says he didn't have any trouble attracting tenants for the shopping center. City Utilities says it's also finding more businesses around here that want to be environmentally friendly.
Cara Shaefer with CU says, "Saving money is typically what people think about. They're getting a better quality of light, but also they're helping everybody out by using less energy."
O'Reilly says he's hoping more contractors will look at his center as a model for construction. He says almost 80 percent of construction waste will be recycled. That's compared to virtually no recycling for common retail construction.
"You know. We think in five years, these things are going to be part of normal building practice. It won't be out of the ordinary. It will be common." says O’Reilly.
Developers of these so called green buildings must consider the cost aspect as well. KOLR10 News asked O'Reilly on Friday about that and he says his shopping center will cost significantly more to build than a typical center. That's due to the design, price of materials and recycling of construction materials. Yet, he also says the building should recoup those costs within nine years due to the cost savings of using a lot less energy.