First Office Furniture Industry Showroom to Achieve Highest Available Rating
September 15, 2009 – Grand Rapids, MI – Steelcase Inc., the industry’s largest provider of work environments today announced that its Grand Rapids, Michigan, WorkLab™ was recently granted Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) platinum certification by the U.S. Green Building Council, making it the first showroom in the office furniture industry to achieve the highest ranking available. The Steelcase WorkLab is a brand experience center for design professionals and customers that demonstrates the newest Steelcase products in a variety of workplace settings.
“At Steelcase we believe designing for the environment should consider every aspect of our business. It’s part of the essential fabric of who we are, “said Jim Keane, president, Steelcase Group. “This means we understand the impact our products have throughout their life cycle, as well as how the buildings we create protect the environment and improve the lives of everyone who work in them. The WorkLab’s platinum certification is a demonstration of our aspirations, and reflects our commitment to balance environmental, social and economic goals.”
Featuring the latest Steelcase products, the WorkLab environment allows visitors to experience the furniture and understand how it can enable them to create strong connections in the workplace between colleagues, information and the overall organization. Launched in November 2008, the building was designed to immerse guests into a natural environment via the latest sustainable design practices.
WorkLab operates on 100 percent green power and a variety of features help reduce the building’s overall energy costs. An open design allows for natural light to flood the interiors, while high-performance insulating glass and roof systems increase the building’s thermal performance. Moreover, a bioswale pool and vegetation capture and filter rainwater from building run-off , reducing approximately 5.1 million gallons of water annually from the sewer system.
Additional environmental highlights include: Azay Blue Fescue grass which requires little maintenance or watering; raised flooring to allow for long-term flexibility and adaptability; white membrane roofs and the conversion of paved areas to green spaces to reduce urban heat island effects.
Steelcase continues to implement sustainable practices into the space, including green cleaning strategies and sustainability education on the building and products shown in the showroom.
The U.S. Green Building Council designed the LEED rating system to encourage the development of more sustainable buildings. The council certified the WorkLabTM as platinum after a nine month review process which involved five environmental categories.
About Steelcase Inc.
Steelcase Inc. helps create great experiences – wherever work happens. Our brands offer a comprehensive portfolio of workplace furnishings, products and services, inspired by nearly 100 years of insight gained serving the world’s leading organizations. We are globally accessible through a network of channels, including over 800 dealers. We design for social, economic, and environmental sustainability. Steelcase is a global, publically traded company leading our industry with 2009 revenue of approximately $3.2 billion.