Cree LED Revolution Blog
Cree and LED lighting are starting a revolution
July 15th, 2010
Four years ago, Ric Richards had to decide what to do with an aging McDonald’s franchise he just purchased in Cary, NC. The 25-year-old building was going to need “serious reinvestment,” he said, requiring major renovations to the front of the restaurant and drive-thru.
So Ric decided to do something he dreamed of ever since stepping foot in the first green McDonad’s in Savannah, Ga. He decided he was going to tear down the old McDonald’s and go for the gold. Ric wanted to achieve a gold LEED certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.
“This was going to be the right thing to do,” Ric told me when I interviewed him last year about his decision.
Today marks the one-year anniversary of Ric’s dream coming true. The green McDonald’s in Cary’s Saltbox Village shopping center opened its doors one year ago today, and Ric and his crew are inviting the public to celebrate from 4 to 7 p.m. (for those readers who live in the area).
Once the decision was made to demolish the old McDonalds, 99 percent of the building materials were recycled. Then, a variety of sustainable goods – from tables made of bamboo and sunflower seeds to denim insulation – were used in the reconstruction. And, of course, we were thrilled when Ric decided to light the restaurant, inside and out, with LED lights.
In fact, 95 percent of the restaurant is lit with energy-saving LED lights. Nearly all of the general illumination inside the McDonald’s comes from Cree LED lights. And the LED lights in his store consume 78 percent less electricity compared to a standard lighting package at other McDonald’s restaurants.
In January, the USBGC announced that Rich’s goal had been achieved. The Cary McDonald’s earned gold LEED certification.
We’re proud of Ric’s accomplishment and thrilled that his new energy-efficient lights helped him achieve his dream. Now would someone please bring me some chicken McNuggets? I hear they look better under LED lights.