Over the weekend, REI opened the doors on a brand-spanking new, LEED-CI Silver certified, green retail store in Boulder, Colorado. Designed by Gensler, this store is an extension of REI’s commitment to green building. REI’s director of store development, Dean Iwata, said, "REI’s Boulder store builds on our more than 10 years of green building experience, and helps us test concepts that will pave the way for how our stores are built in the future, including design, material selections and use of technology." I couldn’t be happier for the company — I think I’ve found a justification to splurge $165 on a new North Face Denali jacket. Vote with your money, right?!
The store has tons of green technology, such as specially-designed Solatubes (which save major deniro and energy). Also, using efficient, low-flow fixtures, the store uses 30% less water than federal code mandates. 70 percent of the store’s hot water is heated through solar energy. REI Boulder is the first retail integration of Building Integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV) and uses recycled, renewable, and low-VOC materials throughout. Plus, as many responsible builders do, REI diverted 75% of construction waste from the local landfills by using it in other areas of the store or recycling it.