Volkswagen’s new production facility in Chattanooga, Tennessee has achieved the world’s first LEED-Platinum green building certification for an automotive manufacturing plant, according to a recent article. The $1 billion production facility, which makes the 2012 Passat, earned the 52 of a possible 69 points to earn the Platinum designation, the highest in the LEED rating system.
The facility’s green features include:
- Certification of the paint shop facility, which will save more than 50 million gallons of water per year;
- The salvage or recycling of nearly 78%, or over 4,600 tons, of construction and demolition waste
- The extensive use of recycled materials in the building’s construction;
- The use of low-flow water closets and urinals, which reduces the potable water used for sewage conveyance in the building by nearly 60%. Together with the use of rainwater harvested from the room, more than 1.7 million gallons of potable water are saved each year. Low-flow showers, lavatory, and kitchen faucets further cut water usage, resulting in total savings for over 3 million gallons of potable water each year.
- The inclusion of a white, reflective roof that reflects heat, lowering cooling costs and saving energy.
- Exterior lights that provide only the minimum lighting required for safety to ensure that light does not spill into the night sky, limiting excessive glare.
- The inclusion of bike racks for visitors and employees, as well as showers and lockers for employee use and preferred parking for those driving low-emitting and fuel-efficient vehicles and for those who carpool to the site.
The adjoining Volkswagen Academy facility, developed in conjunction with Chattanooga State Community College, which trains people for work at the manufacturing plant, is also certified LEED-Platinum, earning 54 of 69 possible points.
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