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REPLACING GRAY WITH GREEN

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REPLACING GRAY WITH GREEN
Dave Lyman
It was a stroke of luck that the new FedEx distribution center at O'Hare International Airport got the chance to have a green roof. The distributor's 22-year-old building was in the way of a new runway being built as a part of the new O'Hare modernization plan. The new 175k SF building is completely covered in seedum, a low-to-the-ground plant that requires no watering and little maintenence, FedEx's Dave Lyman tells us. The seedum provides water filtration, insulates the building, and reduces the heat island effect produced by the airport, says FedEx project manager Kit Creighton-Smith.
Fed Ex Green Roof
We're told the roof, which took just 17 days to install, is the largest on any airport building in the US. It's also inspiring the tenants that had to move because of runway construction to consider similar solutions (we think we saw FedEx's neighbor, United, putting one in). While the roof cost nearly twice as much as a traditional roof to install, FedEx is expecting more than $30k in energy savings annually. And it shouldn't need to be replaced for 30 to 40 years. 
Related Topics: Hare International Airport