Posted on: March 6, 2020

Going Green at The Classic Center

Water Conservation Award Logo

An Energy Savings Performance Contract is a plan where a facility partners with an energy service company to establish energy and water conservation measures. The contract guarantees that the savings from the project will eventually cover the cost of the installations over a given period of time. This process allows energy saving efficiency to begin much earlier than it otherwise might. In this regard, Paul Cramer, Executive Director of The Classic Center, would like to thank The Classic Center Authority Board for their foresight in implementing an ESPC.

Mr. Cramer also says, “As a Center, we’ve always been committed to Athens. We want our community and the environment around it to be as healthy as possible, and we see it as part of our job to do what we can to preserve it.” Planning for The Classic Center’s ESPC began in 2017 and results began to surface in early 2019 after a year of contracting and installation. With this contract, The Classic Center invested $1.5 million into renovations that upgraded its facility through LED and solar lighting systems, water efficiency measures, chiller and pump replacement, theatre air system updates, and ventilation controls. All of these measures are estimated to save one million kWh of energy annually.

As a result of these efforts, The Classic Center was awarded the Leadership in Water Conservation Award for Business in 2018. Water usage was reduced by 1.1 million gallons per year through the implementation of low flow, motion-activated faucets, ultra-low flow restroom fixtures, smart landscape irrigation systems that monitor real-time weather conditions, and pedal-operated faucets in the kitchens to reduce running water.

As we move forward with our initiatives, The Classic Center will put a major focus on recycling programs. The facility is excited to announce that Timothy DeMott, Director of Operations, has taken on the additional role of Recycling Coordinator. His partnership with the Athens-Clarke County Recycling Division and The Classic Center’s in-house caterer, Levy, will allow us to do more with composting and recycling than ever before.

To add a touch of green to the green initiative, a tree canopy was established with dozens of mature trees within the building’s landscape design in order to contribute to the reduction of carbon dioxide pollutants, storm water run-off control, and soil infiltration. Because of its green initiatives, The Classic Center was recognized by ConventionSouth as an approved Green Meetings Site in 2013. The same year, construction was completed on the Atrium, which was built to be LEED certified. According to the US Green Building Council, “LEED certification is a globally recognized symbol of sustainability achievement.” The Classic Center is excited to use its resources to implement good business practices and is eager to expand on this work when the development of its new arena begins.

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