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SCARBOROUGH, Maine - Hannaford Supermarkets president and c.e.o. Ronald Hodge and Maine Governor John Baldacci said yesterday at a press conference held at the site of the former Cony High School in state capital Augusta that Hannaford would seek Platinum certification -- the highest available, naturally topping Gold and Silver -- from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) for a store scheduled to be built on the site next year. The Hannaford location would be the first Platinum-certified LEED supermarket in the world, according to the retailer.
The Platinum designation, granted through USGBC's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), a national green building rating system, means that a business has committed to constructing a building with such environmentally responsible features and systems as solar photovoltaic panels, a green roof, geothermal heating and cooling, high-efficiency refrigeration, energy-efficient lighting, and an advanced recycling program.
According to Hodge, the store will serve as a research laboratory for the company to test innovations that lower energy usage, waste, and water consumption, while improving air quality, stormwater management, and the use of sustainable materials.
"The net effect of this project will be reduced greenhouse gas emissions, water consumption, and waste, as well as increased landscaping, and an improved indoor environment for both store associates and customers," he said. "Successful new technologies and building techniques will be applied to future Hannaford stores."
Replacing the retailer's Willow Street Store in Augusta, the proposed 49,000-square-foot store will feature a pharmacy, a full-service butcher shop, an expanded produce section, a seafood department, a larger bakery, a bigger deli offering ready-to-go meals, and a wide assortment of organic and natural products.
All may not be smooth sailing, however: According to the Associated Press, the project has faced challenges in the state court by opponents who contend that the construction would violate a 19th century trust agreement of David Cony, who wanted the site used for educational purposes only.
Earlier this year Hannaford became the largest certified organic supermarket chain, and the grocer reports that its "Guiding Stars" nutritional program has had a successful first year.
Delhaize-owned Hannaford Bros. Co. operates 160 stores under the Hannaford Supermarket and Hannaford Supermarket and Pharmacy banners.