Environmental concerns are playing a larger role in commercial renovations as the world wakes up to the realities of a changing climate and the depletion of natural resources. Because of the scale of commercial developments, thinking critically when it comes to eco-friendly design can have a much greater environmental impact than what can be achieved in the residential sector. By thinking ahead, implementing environmentally friendly design and choosing the right materials, commercial renovators can reduce their environmental impact and their financial costs at the same time. Here are four tips for eco-friendly commercial renovations.
Intelligent placement of windows will not only increase the use of natural light, it can also reduce the reliance on air conditioning and heating. By using windows to allow more light to enter the building, occupants are the recipients of all the health benefits associated with natural light while the lowering the amount of energy used. Strategic placement of windows can also allow for natural air circulation and decrease the need for artificial air conditioning.
Insulation not only works in keeping a building warm when it’s cold outside, it can also keep a building cooler when it’s hot outside. Investing in proper insulation from the outset will decrease the dependence on heating and air conditioning which will also result in lower energy use and smaller energy bills.
Utilizing the roof of a building to include plant life can also act as a type of insulation. Green roofs are incredibly effective in reducing the amount of heat reflected back into the environment as well as the heat absorbed into the building itself. A green roof will also prevent heat from escaping when the weather cools off. As an added bonus, building occupants will have access to a green area for breaks, meetings and brainstorming sessions.
By implementing previously used materials into a commercial renovation, a builder can bring down its costs while lowering the environmental impact caused by using all new materials. Materials such as reclaimed lumber, recycled glass and second life plastics will not only bring down costs, they can also create a unique style.