The nine-person staff at Key Architecture Inc. operates out of an office building that was constructed during a time when green was merely a color.
Jim Key, owner of KAI, began leasing office space in the building in 2000 and purchased the 1940s era facility in 2002. He immediately set to work updating the 1,500-SF building to meet his team’s needs.
The building’s mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems were updated, the walls were insulated and the exterior received a natural-looking stucco finish.
More recently a white, reflective coating was applied to the roof to decrease ambient temperature.
The team salvaged 1950s light fixtures from a client’s office and updated them with T8 warm white lamps. The office’s open ceilings and concrete floors were left exposed and plywood panels were applied to the office walls.
Key said his updated office space is an example of his company’s emphasis on reusing materials. He estimates that building improvements and renovations total about $80 per SF.
Because the building is located in the residential/office zoned Mill District, KAI takes part in Fayetteville’s recycling program, allowing KAI to keep about 50 pounds of waste per week from entering the landfill.
Packaging materials are kept for re-use and ink cartridges are either sold back to the distributor or donated to a local charity.
The company recycles all of its electronic components and uses rebuilt computers and machines.
In June, the office began using recycled paper for printing and copying large-scale drawings. About 90 percent of their usage is recycled paper.
Key said the nature of his business lends itself to finding new ways to go green.
The company is developing a green emphasis and is in the process of compiling a sustainability database that includes standards, certification programs and options for clients that want to go green.
Key said the company has really begun focusing its efforts on helping others understand and utilize sustainable measures in their own spaces.
(See more of the greenest offices in Northwest Arkansas by clicking here.)