Ongoing discussions between the city of Asheville and Staples have focused on signage, landscaping and measures like a “green screen” that would soften the store’s appearance from the street at its Merrimon Avenue location.
But the effort to smooth tensions stirred by the Asheville office-supply store by planting more shrubs pales in comparison to the lengths Staples has gone to in Miami, Fla. There, the world’s largest office-products company is building its very first LEED-certified retail building. The “green” Staples will feature, among other things, waterless urinals, parking stops made from recycled materials and even showers — for customers who bike to the store and want to freshen up before they shop.
The new “green” Staples is the first to be built by the office-supply company. With sales of $18.2 billion in 2006, Staples — which is headquartered outside of Boston — operates more than 1,900 office superstores, according to a company press release.
Miami Mayor Manny Diaz was quoted in a Staples press release as saying that the green-building project can help the city to “achieve its goal of becoming a model city for sustainable living.”
— Rebecca Bowe, contributing editor