Sitting on 25 acres, it's home to the latest technology. Along with a solar-tube daylighting system, used by Lowe's for the first time, the facility features numerous other energy-reducing and environmentally friendly components. From waterless urinals to a high-efficiency forklift-battery charging system, it's all part of Lowe's continuing focus on incorporating efficient technologies in the construction and operation of companywide facilities.
The 247 roof-mounted solar tubes capture ambient and direct light that is diffused into the warehouse space below. The tubes can provide sufficient lighting even on cloudy days, in the early morning and late afternoon. They also work in tandem with high-efficiency T8 supplemental fluorescent lights. If the amount of natural light is insufficient, the fluorescent lighting is automatically brought up to preprogrammed levels.
The facility's operating schedule maximizes the use of daylight, providing substantial savings in energy costs and minimizing its overall carbon footprint. Based on the Centralia FDC's average monthly lighting use, the daylight harvesting system reduces annual lighting use by an estimated 80%.
FDC employees also benefit. An ample supply of natural light can improve safety and boost employee morale and productivity. In addition to the solar tubes, a series of 22 skylight-like glass panels line the upper wall on the south side of the distribution center, letting more natural light penetrate deep into the facility to the employees below.
Employees are encouraged to carpool or bike to work. The facility has a canopy-covered bike rack near the entrance. To reduce water consumption, the Centralia FDC was equipped with water-saving showerheads and toilets, as well as waterless urinals that save about a gallon of water for each flush a standard urinal would release.
The lumberyard is lit with high-efficiency T5 fluorescent lights. Inside, energy recovery ventilators and high-speed roll-up doors reduce the operating cost of the high-efficiency HVAC system. The Centralia facility is our first FDC to use the sensor-driven roll-up doors, which help manage environmental control in cold and rainy climates and locations with a high volume of forklift traffic.
Lowe's knows if the roll-up doors or any other facility feature is consuming an inordinate amount of energy. With the help of an energy sub-metering system on the premises, we monitor energy use to identify unusual patterns and optimize overall energy consumption.
Being a leader in efficient building means finding a more sustainable way. With the Centralia facility, our 15th FDC, Lowe's continues to seek solutions that reduce the consumption of natural resources, minimize environmental impact and create a better place for employees to work.