Energy efficiency gets at boost at Portland’5 Centers for the Arts
Portland’5 Centers for the Arts venues implemented several energy efficiency upgrades last year, including replacement of the heating, ventilation and air conditioning control system and an inefficient rooftop cooling unit at Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall, and upgrading stage work lights with LEDs at Keller Auditorium.
Oregon Convention Center increased donations of usable materials from events by 425 percent
As a result of its commitment to preventing waste, the Oregon Convention Center saw a sizable jump in the amount of usable materials donated to local community groups in the last year, advancing progress toward Metro’s waste reduction goal.
The amount of materials brought in for shows at the convention center can be substantial. Often, the cost for exhibitors to ship these materials back to their headquarters after the show is prohibitive. Rather than send these materials to the landfill, Oregon Convention Center staff work with show managers, decorators, exhibitors and local nonprofit organizations to put these materials to good use. This effort has paid off – both in a 425 percent increase in materials donated last year (from four tons to 21 tons), and in reduced disposal costs for clients.
Elephant Lands project earned LEED Gold certification
In July, Oregon Zoo staff learned that the Elephant Lands project had earned LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
Some of the sustainable features of Elephant Lands include: a state-of-the-art pool filtration system that saves millions of gallons of water per year; rainwater harvesting for flushing toilets and wash down; an innovative geothermal system that shares heat between the elephant and polar bear exhibits; and solar photovoltaic panels and solar hot water.
Glendoveer Golf Course using solar power to improve water quality
At Glendoveer Golf Course, efforts to reduce toxins and enhance water quality got a boost with the installation of solar-powered aerators in three golf course ponds. Aeration helps create a healthier pond ecosystem, and choosing a solar-powered system means no electricity from the grid is needed to operate the aerators, avoiding greenhouse gas emissions.
Metro Regional Center installed energy-saving upgrades
Metro Regional Center implemented several energy efficiency projects to reduce energy use and costs. One improvement had to do with the system for heating and cooling the Council Chambers. The system was running from morning until nighttime, despite the fact that the Chambers are not occupied about a quarter of that time. Occupancy sensors were installed that allow the system to turn off when the room is unoccupied and restart when occupied. This improvement is expected to save 48,000 kilowatt-hours per year in energy savings (equivalent to powering four homes) and approximately $5,200 per year in costs.
Several non-functioning exterior lights at the Metro Regional Center and adjacent Irving Street parking garage were replaced with LEDs. These lighting upgrades are expected to reduce energy consumption from these fixtures by 72 percent.
Park improvements help protect the Columbia River
The recent expansion of the M. James Gleason Memorial Boat Ramp on the Columbia River included the addition of more than 117,000 square feet of native plantings, including bioswales that filter stormwater runoff from the parking lot and prevent it from entering the river.
Oregon Convention Center is recertified Salmon Safe
The Oregon Convention Center renewed its Salmon Safe certification, which requires building management practices that protect water quality, restore habitat, and reduce stormwater runoff and water pollution.
The Oregon Convention Center practices sustainability throughout its operations. In addition to being the first convention center in the U.S. to achieve Salmon-Safe certification, the facility has earned LEED for Existing Buildings certification at the silver level from the U.S. Green Building Council and helps clients plan sustainable events with on-site recycling and other waste-reduction services.
Oregon Zoo switches to electric vehicles
The zoo replaced three gas-powered vehicles with clean-running electric carts for transport on zoo grounds, saving 150 gallons of gas per year. From serving shade-grown coffee to composting animal waste, the Oregon Zoo has made sustainability a priority in its business operations.
Energy efficiency takes center stage at Portland’5 Centers for the Arts
A new chiller system was installed at Antoinette Hatfield Hall, home to the Newmark, Brunish and Winningstad Theaters. The new system will save an estimated 87,500 kWh of electricity and 2,300 therms of natural gas, adding up to more than $24,000 a year.
Staff chose to install an ecoroof when the Metro Central household hazardous waste facility in Portland was due for a roof replacement. The 2,665-square-foot ecoroof covers approximately 60 percent of the facility’s roof area and was designed to be low-maintenance by using 13 varieties of hardy sedum plants.
Portland’5 Centers for the Arts installed energy efficient LED lighting at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. By installing the fixtures, the venue expanded its color capabilities and reduced energy usage from these on-stage and front of house lighting fixtures.
The Oregon Zoo was honored with the Association of Zoos and Aquariums’ Green Award in 2012, recognizing "significant achievement" in reducing the environmental impact of its day-to-day operations.
In summer 2012, the Oregon Convention Center launched the Plaza Palooza outdoor concert series with three goals in mind: boost revenues, enhance neighborhood livability and maximize sustainability. The facility established a zero-waste goal at the series’ onset and, through a partnership with its recycling/composting contractor, Recology, achieved an average diversion rate of 79 percent.
Metro venues’ caterer pacificwild catering wins second place Portland BEST award for their efforts to purchase local food and support local markets. When in season, 70 percent of produce purchases are local, representing nearly $1.8 million in annual sales.
When the Oregon Zoo upgraded the life-support system at the penguin exhibit as a part of the zoo’s bond program, it also added filters that will reduce the water consumed by the exhibit and improve water quality for the penguins. The new system takes circulated water from the exhibit and treats it for reuse. As a result of this project, water use from this exhibit is projected to be reduced by 90 percent.
The Hoyt Street Station Community Café at the Metro Regional Center in Portland’s Lloyd District incorporates green building features and job training for individuals in underserved communities who face barriers to entering culinary management careers.
The Oregon Convention Center completed a major lighting retrofit in exhibit hall and lobby spaces that reduces energy use by between 50 and 90 percent per fixture. Overall, the expected annual energy savings is about 2,721,578 kWh, representing an estimated financial savings of $130,636 each year. Project funding included grants from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the Energy Trust of Oregon and the Business Energy Tax Credit.
Metro included sustainable design elements in planning Cooper Mountain Nature Park and Graham Oaks Nature Park. A solar array was installed at Cooper Mountain, generating 4.4 kilowatts of renewable energy, and bioswales treat the site's stormwater. At Graham Oaks, the use of pervious pavement, native plants, recycled latex paint and local materials all contribute to the park's sustainability.