by Audrey Buck

L.L. Bean Mansfield

Over the course of this semester, I’ve covered a lot of different kinds of LEED buildings from residential buildings to offices to convention centers. For my last passion post of the semester, I’d like to focus on a type of building that I haven’t talked about before; commercial space.

When designing a new retail store in Mansfield, MA, L.L. Bean decided to appeal to their core customer base and strive for silver LEED certification. As an outdoor equipment store, they recognized that their customers have a great love for the Earth and L.L. Bean hoped to channel those feelings into their design. They wanted to have a store that brought the outdoors in; the architects decided to incorporate this request by incorporating natural light into the store’s design. This innovation reduced the facility’s dependence upon electricity and reduced it’s energy consumption by 40%.

Along with electricity, L.L. Bean challenged their architects to conserve water. By including water-less urinals and low-flow toilets and sinks into their design, the store reduced it’s water consumption by 29%.

The part of the project that I find to be the most exciting is the use of materials in the store. A big focus of the design was construction material selection. The project team didn’t want to incorporate any materials that would harm Earth’s natural resources into their design; they heavily focused on choosing recycled and repurposed building materials. The project used carpet and rubber flooring which contained recycled content. They also used FSC-certified hardwoods and reclaimed barn boards for the finished materials to add warmth and motifs from the outdoors to the retail store. L.L. Bean not only specified the use of these materials, they also ordered the meticulous sorting of all construction waste from the site. By doing so, the project diverted 94% of its total waste.

As a customer, would a brand’s dedication to green building influence the amount of money you spent at a store? Does hearing about L.L. Bean‘s conscientiousness make them more credible in your eyes?

5 Responses to “L.L. Bean Mansfield”

  1. tad5426

    What an admirable thing L.L. Bean done. What a great passion post.

  2. dcp5199

    It feels good to know that L.L. Bean has integrity. They understand what they stand for and what their consumers value. Knowing their consumer values, L.L. Bean went above and beyond, striving for a silver LEED certification. I dealt with LEED a decent amount in high school architecture projects, so it’s great to see that someone else has an interest in construction.

  3. cmm6693

    I really admire L.L. Bean for doing this and it really does make them more credible. One can see that they really do care for the environment and are not just saying they do for publicity. I hope other commercial spaces and homes take after them and try to make buildings with the environment in mind.

  4. rsp5212

    I applaud L.L. Bean for doing this. By making their space more environmentally friendly, it really appeals to consumers who know that the company is true to its word and socially responsible. I believe that this will make people want to consume more L.L. Bean Merchandise because buyers will feel good that they are buying from a company that is also doing good things for our Earth. I personally did not know that L.L. Bean was so environmentally friendly and will make sure to keep this in mind the next time i’m shopping!

  5. Paulina

    In my opinion, L.L. Bean’s conscientiousness definitely makes them more credible considering they are an outdoorsy type of store. If maybe that wasn’t the kind of market they were targeting, it would be different but I do hope that other store will take the initiative to take action and build their stores with the Earth in mind. Although we haven’t been responding to many passion posts with the new blog groups, I loved your passion posts and they definitely helped me learn a lot about construction!

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