Local Building Honored for being Environmentally Friendly

Published 04/22 2014 09:09PM

Updated 04/22 2014 09:27PM

PEORIA - A Peoria building is earning an award for being environmentally friendly just in time for Earth Day. It joins a short list of local buildings that are Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design- or LEED Gold certified by the U.S. Green Building Council.

“It’s our social and community responsibility to be thinking about our community and environment,” said Matthew Warrens, JUMP Executive Director of Operations.

Only five buildings in Peoria are LEED Gold Certified and at least until today, when JUMP Trading Simulation and Education Center was named number six.

“I like the idea that it's, we're receiving it on earth day. It's a great...sometimes people think of Earth Day as how am I supporting the environment. So I am really proud that we are able to achieve the award today.”

JUMP earned the award by dedicating their center to being environmentally friendly. Much like the LEED certified Peoria Riverfront Museum.

“It is important to us, but we want them to take away with them something that they can do at home, to help, help...this Earth Day, to help save the planet,” says Ann Schmit of the Peoria Riverfront Museum.

The Peoria Riverfront Museum is only a couple years old. And yes, it’s probably easier for a museum to have all these amenities- amenities that make it more environmentally friendly- than other businesses. Still, some of their features; including the solar panels, electric car charger and eco-friendly carpet are impressive.

“The carpet I'm standing on kind of looks funny...looks like a schnauzer...but that's because it's made out of recycled hair in part.”

But a building doesn’t need to be a museum- or for that matter new- to eb environmentally friendly. Take for example the Mark Twain Hotel, a structure built in 1967. It’s the first certified green hotel in Peoria.

“Physically we had to do a lot of things like changing all the airators in the hotel to low flow,” said Mark Twain Hotel General Manager Naomi Shea.

But the Mark Twain Hotel also did little the little things, like put in recycling bins and install low flush toilets. A two-year processes that not only is helping the environment, but improving businesses.

“It also helped our team internally learn what are the simple things they can do every day that are going to amount to saving our national resources and helping our hotel run more efficiently.”

JUMP earned the award because it uses recycled materials. limits water usage and prevents 95% of its construction waste from ever reaching a landfill.

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