Garland is finding that environmentally friendly makeovers for old buildings saves taxpayers more green in the long haul.
The Charles E. Duckworth Utility Services building is one of two LEED-certified buildings that has received a green makeover.
"This building was originally built in the 1960s," said Ginny Holliday, of Garland Facilities Management. "It housed our police department, our fire administration and our information services, and they were all kind of packed in here. As those departments grew, we literally outgrew the space."
Instead of demolishing the old building, the city saved thousands of taxpayer dollars by renovating it.
Seventy-five of the Duckworth building’s waste was recycled and went on to be used for other projects.
From top to bottom, a lot of recycled materials went into the Duckworth building's makeover. The building, with its carpet made of recycled materials, low-flow toilets and faucets, solar panels and plants that use less water, is a leader in the city's green initiative.
"We've also instituted desk-side recycling for employees," Holliday said. "We've bought alternative fuel vehicles. We are constantly looking for ways where we as a city can make less of an impact on the environment around us."
Employees such as Kevin Slay, whose Customer Service Department is one of several housed in the building, said it has even changed how he functions at home.
“We've always heard about the green initiative and the green perspective, but this building kind of forces us to think about what we're doing with our waste, our papers our products," he said.
A remote payment center also received a green makeover.