Milestone AV Technologies, a designer and manufacturer of branded audiovisual products, won the 2013 Sustainable AV Award at a VIP reception held June 13 at the InfoComm International tradeshow in Orlando, Fla.
“A lot of companies talk about getting greener, but Milestone has transformed its words into action and is a shining example of how exceptional companies can focus on improving the world while producing world-class products,” said David Labuskes, CTS, RCDD, executive director and CEO, InfoComm International.
A trade association representing the professional audiovisual and information communications industries worldwide, InfoComm International’s award recognizes companies and individuals who have implemented environmentally sustainable practices, from manufacturing products to the integration of AV systems along with green initiatives in the workplace.
“This was made possible by a dedicated team of employees and partners committed to continually striving to improve our sustainable efforts across our brands,” said Scott Gill, CEO, Milestone AV Technologies. “Being environmentally responsible has become a part of our mission and culture. We will continue to work toward new solutions and business practices that are environmentally conscious.”
In 2011, sustainable design was the focus of an office building Milestone purchased in Eden Prairie, Minn., to serve as its global headquarters.
“When deciding to move into a new headquarters, it was important for us to reduce the impact on the local environment while creating a more comfortable and productive space for Milestone employees,” said Gill. “We met both of these goals by renovating an existing building.”
Milestone’s step to renovate saved this existing building. Its updated interior was designed to incorporate natural lighting for 95 percent of regularly occupied workspaces and ENERGY STAR ratings for 95 percent of the equipment in the building.
These efforts led to a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for Commercial Interiors (LEED-CI) Silver certification through the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).
Results of energy-efficient features and green building practices that Milestone AV Technologies employs in its headquarters include:
- 30 percent reduction in water usage with the implementation of low flow fixtures.
- 15 percent reduction of energy consumption from lighting. Interior and exterior lighting was chosen to minimize light pollution at night.
- The building’s HVAC system allows for a 30 percent increase in outdoor air ventilation
- 15.5 percent of construction materials were made of recycled content.
- 89.5 percent of the construction waste was diverted from the landfill and recycled.
- 32.8 percent of construction materials were manufactured locally within 500 miles of the construction site.
- 31 percent of the raw material used to create the construction material was also extracted within 500 miles of the project site.
- All paints, adhesives and carpet systems were selected for their low volatile organic compound content.
- Use of outside air to cool the building’s data center without using additional energy due to Minnesota’s low ambient temperature.
- Nearby walking/jogging paths, bicycle storage and shower facilities to encourage alternative ways for employees to commute to work.
- Location near four major highways as well as a proposed light rail transit line.
- Purchasing renewable energy certificates to provide 100 percent green power helps to improve renewable energy project economics, increasing its competitiveness with fossil fuels like coal and natural gas.
- Every workstation at headquarters has a divided wastebasket for garbage and recycling, and bins in each meeting room and gathering place include space for recyclable content.
- Milestone introduced processes to reduce paper waste by utilizing electronic copies rather than printouts; routing fax numbers to e-mail; and creating more online marketing tools, including a FastFlip catalog than the traditional print form. Milestone switched to recycled paper 10 years ago. All U.S. catalogs are printed on FSC papers with FSC vendors.