Oklahoma City convention center may go with solar energy

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(www.newsok.com)

Mayor Mick Cornett asked the MAPS 3 convention center architect to determine what it would cost to study the feasibility of installing rooftop solar above the 200,000-square-foot exhibit hall.

The exhibit hall roof provides a vast area that could be utilized for producing solar energy.

Convention centers in cities including Anaheim, Portland, Las Vegas and Houston defray energy costs with solar installations.

“Clearly this is the trend,” said Ward 2 Councilman Ed Shadid.

Energy efficiency and sustainability are selling points for convention centers around the country.

LEED, an acronym for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is administered by the U.S. Green Building Council.

The council says LEED-certified buildings are “resource efficient,” conserving water and energy and reducing greenhouse gas emissions while saving money. 

The George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston promotes its LEED Silver certification and sustainability initiatives.

Here’s a quote from Luther Villagomez, the chief operating officer of convention facilities and services in Houston:

“Meeting planners and trade show executives that plan green meetings increasingly want to do business with convention centers that are environmentally responsible.”

Searching Google for “convention center LEED” turns up links promoting energy efficiency of convention centers in Los Angeles; Austin; Denver; Portland, Ore.; Raleigh, N.C.; Irving, Texas, and other cities.