Going ‘green’ in Riverside

Dallas-based Koll Development Co. recently announced that 1 of 5 “green” office projects currently under development nationwide will be at the Meridian business park in Riverside near March Air Reserve Base.

Intellicenter Riverside
Koll Development Co.

Dubbed Intellicenter Riverside, the 3-story, 159,000 square foot office building will be built in accordance with LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) specifications. Features of the design include raised flooring enabling more efficient air flow systems as well as easier access for communication networking.

Planned for 11 acres near a future Metrolink commuter rail station, the building is expected to be completed in mid-2008.

Intellicenter Riverside is the second major “green” project announced for the 1,290-acre Meridian project, which is being built on former Air Force land across Interstate 215 from March Air Reserve Base. The land once contained base housing known as Arnold Heights (named for distinguished U.S. Air Force general and former March Field commander Henry “Hap” Arnold).

Earlier this year, it was announced that British-based grocer Tesco, which is about to launch its “Fresh & Easy” neighborhood grocery stores, will build what is being billed as the world’s largest solar panel system atop its large distribution center at Meridian:

“The solar roof in Riverside is rated for peak power output of 2 megawatts and it will produce over 2.6 million kilowatt hours per anum, providing nearly a fifth of the depot’s power supply,” (Tesco USA CEO, Tim) Mason said. “That will save approximately 1,200 tons carbon dioxide emissions each year.”

Riverside Press-Enterprise – April 19, 2007

The $13 million solar system will cover approximately 500,000 square feet atop 2 of the 5 buildings comprising the 820,000 square foot distribution center.

In a related note, local mayors from the cities of Riverside, San Bernardino, Chino, and Yucaipa as well as the former mayor of Hemet have joined 450 mayors nationwide in agreeing to plan “greener cities.” The mayoral movement is intended to encourage U.S. cities to independently agree to the 2005 Kyoto Protocol, which the U.S. government has refused to sign.

The commitment by Mayor Ronald Loveridge of Riverside comes on the heels of the city recently drafting a citywide green policy and, along with several California municipal utilities (Los Angeles, Anaheim, Burbank, and Glendale), agreeing not to renew long-term energy contracts with the Intermountain Coal power plant in Utah.

Moreover, as part of the state’s requirement for utilities to receive 20% of all power from renewable sources by 2017, Riverside Public Utilities has built 7 solar panel systems since 2002 on various buildings/structures across the city. As such, the city hopes to reach the 20% goal by 2010 (in 2006, the city received approximately 13% of its energy from renewable sources).

We’re glad to see Riverside once again taking a leading role in environmental matters just as it once did in aggressively battling smog during the 1970s under the watch of the late mayor Ben Lewis.



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