LEED puts the 'Gold' in Riverside golden arches

McDonald's restaurant recognized for significant energy savings.

January 19, 2012 |

A McDonald's restaurant in Riverside, Calif., was recently awarded LEED Gold certification, the first McDonald's west of the Mississippi, and only the fourth in the U.S., to receive the designation. 

"This gold certification from LEED underscores our rigorous sustainability initiatives," said Candace Spiel, McDonald's owner/operator. "

This restaurant is owned and operated by Tom and Candace Spiel and stood as a McDonald's for 44 years. In 2010, the restaurant was completely rebuilt and reopened on October 14, 2010 containing a host of green features such as low-flow plumbing fixtures, recycled denim insulation inside the building, native drought-tolerant plants to reduce water consumption by landscape and solar panels.

The restaurant also includes an interactive touch-screen display for visitors to learn about the building's features, environmental sustainability, and how individuals can reduce their carbon footprint.

The University Avenue McDonald's has achieved the following water and energy-savings.

  • The restaurant's solar array has generated electrical energy which saves approximately 8,950 kWH per month of utility usage, which is equal to the power usage of 13 average Riverside homes for one month. Increased efficiencies such as low-E glass windows and LED lighting helped realize an additional energy savings of 2,870 kWH per month, which is equal to an additional four Riverside homes.
  • Saved approximately 250,000 gallons of water, which is equal to the water of eight 20 ft x 40 ft swimming pools. 
  • Due to permeable pavers, about 283,000 gallons of rainfall water is diverted from storm water system per year, which is equal to the water of nine 20 ft x 40 ft swimming pools. 

"We are delighted that this local McDonald's has taken such significant measures to conserve our natural resources while educating residents about the importance of energy conservation," said Ron Loveridge, mayor of Riverside.

Beginning as manager trainee and crewperson, respectively, over the last 40 years Tom and Candace have risen within the ranks of the McDonald's system to own and operate nine McDonald's restaurants in the Inland Empire located in Chino, Ontario, Montclair, Pomona, Riverside and Rubidoux. Both Tom and Candace are members of the McDonald's Operators' Association of Southern California, which is comprised of more than 120 small business owners who operate more than 600 McDonald's restaurants in the counties of Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino, and Ventura. BD+C 

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