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The Fresh Grocer is readying its first eco-friendly store, which will open in northwest Philadelphia near LaSalle University next month. The 50,000-square-foot location will create over 250 new jobs and be the neighborhood’s first supermarket in over 40 years.
“As environmental consciousness grows, we are compelled to do our part as a responsible corporate citizen,” said Grant McLoughlin, VP of the eight-store, Philadelphia-based independent. “We are dedicated to operating our stores with an ongoing commitment to the environment and believe incorporating green building features in our new ground-up locations aligns with this mission.”
Ironically, one of The Fresh Grocer’s green features is its white roof, which reduces the heat load on the building as well as the immediate surrounding area. The roof further decreases the need for air conditioning and lowers the “heat island” effect, which can cause higher outdoor temperatures in urban areas.
The new store also features a state-of-the-art refrigeration system designed to reduce energy consumption by 40 percent vs. present-day refrigeration system designs. The building also features an energy management system that monitors power consumption and automatically adjusts systems to minimize energy consumption based on daylight, temperature and shopping traffic. With this new customized energy management system, Fresh Grocer will reduce its energy consumption by 35 percent.
“From refrigeration to lighting, operating a supermarket can consume a good deal of energy and resources,” said McLoughlin. “Now, we have state-of-the-art technology that makes our newest Fresh Grocer location as energy-efficient as possible.”
In addition, solar panels will make use of renewable energy from the sun. The parking lot’s porous paving system allows storm water to permeate the paving in the lot, helping to reduce flooding and recharge ground aquifers, keeping water where it’s meant to be. Carbon dioxide sensors help to minimize the amount of outside air brought in the store while keeping fresh air at adequate levels. LED signs will save the energy demand of two small residential homes. Plus, all waste generated during construction was recycled.
The Fresh Grocer will also open another new store at Progress Plaza in December of this year.