Sustainability in Action

 Colorado Springs Utilities and Nor’wood Development Group announce Plaza of the Rockies has achieved LEED Silver Certification for Existing Building.

October 13, 2016, Colorado Springs, CO – Colorado Springs Utilities and Nor’wood Development Group today announced that Plaza of the Rockies, a premier office building in Downtown Colorado Springs, has achieved LEED Existing Building Operation and Maintenance certification of Silver. The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) building rating system, established by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), is the leading sustainability program for buildings, homes, and neighborhoods that are designed, constructed and operated for improved environmental and human health performance. The North Tower completed in 1984 and expanded with the South Tower in 2001, Plaza of the Rockies is a premier “Class A” office building located in the heart of Colorado Springs, Olympic City USA, home to Colorado Springs Utilities’ corporate offices and a variety of business and government tenants including Morgan Stanley, Vectra Bank, BKD, Charles Schwab, Great Western Bank and Booz Allen Hamilton. Achieving the LEED Silver rating required proof of significant energy and water reduction as well as the use of green building products. Hundreds of water saving fixtures and LED light fixtures were installed to reduce energy and water consumption in all common area restrooms and fitness area showers, saving more than 650,000 gallons of water per year, and existing fixtures were recycled with LED inserts reducing energy usage over 485,000 kilowatt-hours per year. Increased filtration of outside air into the building provides cleaner air to building occupants and guests. More than 75% of the cleaning supplies and paper products used throughout the building are environmentally-friendly and an Intergraded Pest Management Program maintains a pest-free environment without the use of harsh chemicals or pesticides. “The Pikes Peak region is where we live and the only market we do business. Our city of sunshine with its natural beauty, clean air and water deserve to be proactively cared for. Making Plaza of the Rockies a cleaner, smarter building is good for the environment, our city, our customers, visitors and is good for business,” said Chris Jenkins, President of Nor’wood Development Group. “Our relationship with Colorado Springs Utilities to achieve this unique certification is proof that we are better together.” As a key stakeholder and participant to the LEED designation at Plaza of the Rockies, Colorado Springs Utilities is committed to providing its employees with a quality and sustainable work environment reflective of the mission and value of the organization. Colorado Springs Utilities partners with customers using a four-step approach: realization, design and tactical approach, implementation and working with customers, tenants, and suppliers. “Energy companies across the country are using creative strategies to encourage the conservation of energy and natural resources in new and existing buildings,” said Merv Bennett, President of City Council and Board Member of Colorado Springs Utilities. “I am proud of our team at Colorado Springs Utilities for working diligently and partnering with policies and initiatives to support Plaza of the Rockies and CSU’s headquarters in order to find creative ways to conserve resources and achieve a new level of sustainability.” “Customer partnerships like the one with Nor’wood Development Group are the backbone of our business and represent an investment for our entire community, said Jerry Forte, CEO of Colorado Springs Utilities. “Colorado Springs Utilities supports healthy and sustainable building practices that conserve water and energy, which optimizes resources not only for that customer but helps provide all customers with quality, low-cost utilities.” Key partners committed to the principles of LEED have supported this achievement including Frank Kinder of Colorado Springs Utilities, Mayra Rosales and Mura Golden of Master Klean, Hans Hasser and Max Gerlock of Timberline Landscape, Bill Morris and Arnie Navarro of BlueStar Recyclers, Taylor Kottcamp of Waxie Janitorial, Alicia Archibald of Bestway Disposal, Ben Stanley and the building’s sustainability experts, Amber Hicks of Nor’wood Development Group and Trista Little of YR&G. Plaza of the Rockies is the first in a series of buildings owned and managed by Nor’wood Development Group working towards the LEED Existing Building Operation and Maintenance certification. Plans to continue the “greening” of its portfolio continue, most recently with the certification process for the Alamo Corporate Center in Downtown Colorado Springs and also includes a new 172 apartment project located at 333 East Colorado Avenue, also located in Downtown Colorado Springs.
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