We don’t write much about LEED for Commercial Interiors projects in the Garden State, so we were glad to note an important milestone out in deeply suburban Warren County. Mars Chocolate last week announced that its North American headquarters building in Hackettstown has achieved New Jersey’s first LEED Gold certification for a private sector project under the LEED for Commercial Interiors rating system. The project is also Mars’ first anywhere in the world to achieve the designation. Mars implemented over thirty individual green building strategies in pursuit of the 100,000-square-foot building’s rating, including:
- water efficient fixtures that should reduce overall water consumption by 30 percent;
- a Building Energy Management System and energy-efficient lighting and controls that should drop energy consumption by 15 percent;
- reductions in heat gain from reflective material upgrades to the building’s roof;
- the use of 20 percent recycled-content building materials; and
- preferred parking for carpools and vanpools.
You may recall that – almost a year ago, and as part of its headquarters renovation project – Mars opened New Jersey’s largest ground-based solar facility, which includes 28,000 ground-mounted solar panels on 18 acres of land adjacent to the headquarters building. The panels produce 2 megawatts of power at peak demand – almost 20 percent of peak energy requirements for Mars’ M&M’s manufacturing plant, which is also located at its Hackettstown campus. Our kudos to Mars for earning the Garden State another important green distinction.