Volkswagen Chattanooga Factory Earns LEED Platinum Certification

First Automotive Manufacturer to Reach Top Green Building Standard

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Volkswagen’s Chattanooga manufacturing plant has received a platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building certification program.

The facility is the first and only automotive manufacturing plant in the world to receive the Platinum certification.

“Because the Volkswagen Group has a longstanding, worldwide commitment to sustainable mobility and environmentally responsible manufacturing, we are proud to have achieved the LEED Platinum certification at our Chattanooga manufacturing facility,” said Hubert Waltl, member of the board of management for production and logistics. Platinum certification recognizes the highest level of performance.

“Volkswagen Chattanooga’s LEED Platinum certification is the fulfillment of a promise that Volkswagen has made around the world and in this community that we will work in harmony with the environment,” said Frank Fischer, CEO and chairman of Volkswagen Chattanooga.

“Our commitment to building a LEED certified factory began in the planning and design stages,” Mr. Fischer said, “I believe that this not only helped insure that we would achieve Platinum status, but was actually a very cost effective way to implement environmentally responsible building methods.”

Officials said the ultra-clean paint shop alone will save 50 million gallons of water in 10 years.

“Volkswagen is clearly committed to the U.S. market,” said Jonathan Browning, president and CEO, Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. “During the worst recession in the past century we never wavered with our investment of a billion dollars to create this world class facility. This certification underscores Volkswagen’s commitment to engineering excellence.”

LEED certification is an internationally-recognized green building certification system developed by the USGBC in March of 2000. LEED provides building owners and operators with a framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions. LEED promotes sustainable building and development practices through a suite of rating systems that recognize projects that implement strategies for better environmental and health performance.

Aspects of the plant that earned LEED recognition include:

·Superior insulation provided by six inches of mineral rock wool, resulting in 720,000 Kilowatts per year savings.

·Green power from the local hydroelectric dam

·Use of LED lighting on the exterior results in 68% less energy used, up to 262,500 kWh per year and a reduction in light pollution.

·Rainwater collected and reused to flush toilets and cool the welding machines

·White roof membrane is highly reflective, minimizing heat island effect by up to 50 degrees Fahrenheit.

·Natural flowing creeks to capture heavy rains and restore a natural habitat

·Low-flow water fixtures and no-touch sensors throughout the plant reduce water usage by 30 percent.

·Plant was built on a brownfield property with no destruction of untouched nature. Protected 100-foot-wide creeks and wetlands were established to create natural habitats with low impact on natural habitats.

The Volkswagen Academy was also certified by USGBA as a Platinum LEED facility. The primary purpose of the Volkswagen Academy is to prepare new employees for work at the Volkswagen plant. In conjunction with Chattanooga State and Tennessee Tech, the Academy also offers an Industrial Technology degree and an apprenticeship program.

“We are very pleased that the Volkswagen Academy has been Platinum LEED certified, because this reflects the level of excellence that we expect and produce in the academy,” said Hans-Herbert Jagla, EVP of Human Resources.

“Building operations are nearly 40 percent of the solution to the global climate change challenge,” said Rick Fedrizzi, President, CEO and founding chair, U.S. Green Building Council. “While climate change is a global problem, innovative companies like Volkswagen Chattanooga are addressing it through local solutions.”

Volkswagen Chattanooga produces the all-new 2012 Passat, which has recently been named Motor Trend magazine’s 2012 Car of the Year.

Hotel Site For Sale In Downtown Chattanooga

NAI Charter is offering a tract of land for sale that "would make an excellent location for a hotel." The property is located in the Central Business District directly across the street from the Chattanooga Trade & Convention Center. It was noted that a northbound exit ramp from Interstate I-27 is going to be constructed next to the site. Property ... (click for more)

Real Estate Transfers For Nov. 19-25

NOTICE: The Hamilton County Register’s Office did not publish this data. All information in the Register’s Office is public information as set out in T.C.A. 10-7-503. For questions regarding this report, please call at 423 266-2325. GI numbers, listed when street addresses are not available, refer to the location of transactions (book number and page number) ... (click for more)

City Council Votes To Allow 7-Story Apartments By Southside Historic District, But Ground Floor Must Be Commercial

The City Council on Tuesday night voted to allow a seven-story apartment on Cowart Street by the historic district. However, the council is requiring that the ground floor be commercial. The developer, Belle Investments, initially wanted apartments on all seven floors. Due to the change, another reading will be required next Tuesday. The Planning Commission and staff had ... (click for more)

Alexander Says Republican Predictions Were Right That “Obamacare Was Historic Mistake”

Five and a half years after the White House health care summit at Blair House, Senate health committee Chairman Lamar Alexander on Tuesday spoke on the Senate floor to discuss what he said Republicans warned the president would happen if Obamacare became law – and to outline what this “historic mistake” of a law looks like for millions of Americans today. Senator Alexander ... (click for more)

City Council Travesty

  City Council just voted for a seven-story downtown building in a district zoned for 48' height limit. Setback to the building behind will be 6'. This is to allow the current building owner access to their property to maintain it. What I do not understand is how in the fire district this proposed building is in can a parking deck seven stories tall not have alley access ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Garden In December

As the fallen leaves confirm today is the first of December, my monthly walk in life’s garden is more foggy than fun. In much-older times, good children would get a piece of candy on Christmas Day while bad ones would receive a lump of coal. So here are some things that deserve a helping of both: A PIECE OF CANDY to the amazingly few who can spy a nest of mistletoe high in area ... (click for more)