Whole Story

The Official Whole Foods Market® Blog

The Greening of Lakewood

By Seth Stutzman, March 14, 2009  |  Meet the Blogger  |  More Posts by Seth Stutzman
Lakewood Whole Foods Market WOW!! What a great green store for the Lakewood neighborhood! For those who don't know, Lakewood is an area of Dallas and Whole Foods Market has just built the greenest store we have ever built in this area of the country. If you are ever in this neck of the woods, come check it out! When we open new stores, we try out all kinds of innovations. Some work, some don't. We learn from them and share the scoop with our other stores. In this way, our stores around the country all benefit from new store openings and can try out new ideas themselves. So even if you can't make it to Lakewood, what we do here could affect your local store. In Lakewood, we started with an existing (but vacant) grocery store building and transformed it into a beautiful Whole Foods Market for our community. The store has many, many green features from recycled to re-usable, from sustainable to consumption conscious. We started this project with a LEED-focused build and while we are still waiting for the final word, we are keeping our fingers crossed for a Silver Certification. We recycled during the demolition and construction process and it was very impressive to watch how the General Contractor and the Sub-Contractors focused on making sure they maximized the amount of recycling. Lakewood ProduceWe installed 47 skylights with a system that has a solar powered unit built in. It will track the sun's position in the sky to maximize the amount of daylight harvesting that takes place. Also, this system is connected to the lighting in the store and when the daylight harvest is at a certain level, it will kick down the ambient light in the store to 5%. We used high efficiency lighting throughout the store and LED where we could. One cool note is that there are only six types of light bulbs used throughout the store - maybe not a big deal for a home but a really big deal for a business! We installed motion sensors in the frozen section so that lights are only on when we have customers in front of the cases. On all of the refrigerated cases, we installed nightshades that are pulled down when the store is closed - this will help with the cooling of the cases by not allowing the cold air to escape. We were very fortunate to receive a Silver Green Chill Certification, which basically means that we used all non ozone-depleting refrigerants and designed the store to use the lowest refrigerant charges possible (about 1750 lbs - most stores run at least three times that much). We designed with recycled materials as well - look for the recycled glass bottle counter tops on the customer service and the coffee bars. And last but not least, we installed a new kind of hand air dryer in the restrooms. Along with being low energy consumption (uses up to 80% less energy), it's super fast and hygienic. Thanks to everyone who researched these green innovations and did the work to make them happen. Got green ideas for future stores? Let us hear about them! Seth Stutzman started with Whole Foods Market about ten years ago as an Associate Store Team Leader in Seattle at our Roosevelt Square store. He's become something of a legend for helping open new stores and start them off on the right foot - First Bellevue, WA, and then our flagship Austin store before becoming a VP for our Southwest Region, now responsible for Design, Development & Operations for numerous stores.

 

5 Comments

Comments

Eddie G says ...
Kudos :)
03/14/2009 7:41:05 AM CDT
Ted Starling says ...
This is why I LOVE working for Whole Foods Market! We put into action the values that make up the foundation of this company and demonstrate our commitment to the many communities we live and work in.
03/14/2009 10:15:43 AM CDT
Donna Rivera says ...
This store really is amazing. I love working in Lakewood not only for it's beauty, but the community around it! The guests that shop here are amazing! They really seem to appreciate all of the work that went behind making this store green, too. Thanks!
03/14/2009 4:16:22 PM CDT
parkerj says ...
I grew up in Lakewood just a few blocks from this store- this is a great addition to a business district that has undergone enormous change in the 35 years since I rode my 10-speed around it. It's sad to see the old Bluebonnet shut it doors on lower Greenville ave but is wonderful to see it resurrected in this new location to continue to serve the same community. Go Lakewood! Can't wait to see it in person!
03/17/2009 9:35:59 AM CDT
Dave Philips says ...
After reading your blog post, my wife and I went to see the Lakewood store yesterday, and ended up having dinner -- a Lakewood sandwich with broccoli salad. You should be very proud of store. The assoociates are as friendly as ever -years ago our son Matt worked as a check-out clerk at the Plano store and I remember how much your management team focused on courtesy to customers. I am the Chief Blogger for Snack Chat (www.snacks.com) and at Frito-Lay we're also working to have our Plano Headquarters LEED certified. Best of luck, and it looks like you are on the right track.
03/25/2009 3:22:12 PM CDT