Vestas, the world’s largest wind turbine maker, announced Wednesday that it will convert a former Portland, Oregon department store warehouse into its new North American headquarters. An impressive undertaking generously supported by the local government, once the renovation is complete, Vestas will become home to the city’s largest array of solar panels and a gorgeous eco-garden terrace. Gerding Edlen Development, a leader in green architecture, has been chosen to oversee the conversion of the former Meier & Frank warehouse, and with five stories and 194,000 square feet in the pipeline, Vestas will finally be able to house its entire staff under one, green roof. More that just a building of adaptive reuse, the new construction is shooting to achieve LEED Platinum certification!
Originally built in 1928, the former department store will undergo a complete renovation transforming it into certified green home for Vestas. While historic preservation laws prohibit the installation of windmills atop the structure, the proposed roof garden and solar array will keep the building just as cool and energized throughout the year. With Portland taking its place as one of the United States’ greenest cities, and Vestas being one of the world’s greenest companies (ranked one of the 10 greenest publicly traded companies by Portfolio 21), this courtship is a match made in sustainable heaven.
Ringing in at $66 million,Vestas gives thanks to both Oregon and the City of Portland for help in financing the project. The state issued a $2.25 million interest free loan to the company, and a program introduced under the federal stimulus package will allow the municipality to issue up to $31 million in bonds to help finance the project. The sustainable renovation is slated to start in October and Vestas plans to move in by early 2012.
+ Gerding Edlen Development
Via Oregon Live