Two of McDonald’s newest restaurants have gone green with cutting-edge technologies that aim to reduce the units’ impact on the environment.
After two years of planning, Ric Richards of Cary, N.C.-based Richards Advantage Inc. opened a McDonald’s restaurant there in July 2009. The unit is the third McDonald’s unit built to the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) Gold standard. Tom and Candace Spiel of McSpi Inc. in Riverside, Calif., opened the fourth such McDonald’s in October 2010 in that city.
While Richards’ restaurant is LEED Gold certified, the Spiels’ certification is pending.
Richards and the Spiels incorporated LEED Gold certification criteria in their restaurants, such as using recycled denim for insulation, installing low-flow kitchen and bathroom fixtures to reduce water consumption, and using interior surfaces made from renewable resources.
The programs have resulted in reduced utility bills, waste and indoor air pollution, among other benefits.
To build customer awareness of the sustainable features, Richards and the Spiels installed touch-screen LCD Energy Efficiency Education Dashboards. Richards said he invested about $15,000 to install the touch-screens. View the dashboard’s content online
In Depth: Richards and Candace Spiel spoke with Nation’s Restaurant News about their restaurants and how the LCD dashboards are educating customers. Read more in the Sept. 5 issue of Nation’s Restaurant News.