This article is about sustainability on corporate campuses and how corporate campuses are in a prime position to make sustainable decisions.
Despite their recent popularity among mega-corporations, corporate campuses are far from a new phenomenon. Initially a hub for collaboration between researchers and developers from different sectors of an organization, these campuses were essential for growing tech companies in the early half of the twentieth century.
More recent tech companies have taken this idea to the next level by integrating novel methods of encouraging creativity and innovation. This includes wellness services such as entertainment and relaxation centers, a nod to their open-mindedness and modern sensibilities. This apparent conscientiousness and willingness to innovate begs the question, how do corporate campuses fare in terms of sustainability?
Various regulations have passed to incentivize sustainable practices, which often takes the form of financial benefits through tax breaks or subsidies. However, there are other reasons why large corporations may pursue sustainability, not the least of which is public demand. Sustainability is now to the forefront of public consciousness, and consumers want to know the companies they support agree with their values.
Sustainability is now a major part of many marketing campaigns, with consumers now demanding that more environmentally friendly and sustainable practices be adopted by corporations. Many members of the public have participated in demonstrations and advocated for a more sustainable future, and corporations have taken initiatives to appease these demands.
Although integrating these practices into their supply chain and manufacturing operations is a lengthy and complicated process, their willingness to change can be more immediately reflected in their corporate campuses. Flexing their knack for innovation and technological savviness, corporate campuses can also exhibit their efficiency and vision for the future. A corporation eager to innovate and respond to modern demands is often considered more modern than a corporation clinging to traditional methods of operations.
A great example of sustainability in a corporate campus can be found in the new Apple Park, a 2.8 million-square-foot building which will house over 12,000 employees. The first thing you will notice about this campus is just how much greenery it incorporates.
Typical sustainability practices can be found in most major corporate campuses. Campuses are so large, often much larger than an entire suburban neighborhood, they usually have their own services and systems to maintain their community. Things like garbage collection and waste disposal are often controlled internally, so sustainable practices such as recycling and litter control are easily implemented.
Many corporate campuses also invest in purchasing recycled products, such as stationary and office supplies. Ride sharing or carpooling is also popular among workers as large campuses mean there are more people to potentially share commutes. All of these initiatives have become so commonplace that many people naturally expect them at large corporate campuses, so the truly compelling sustainable practices can only be found in their innovative endeavors.
When you think of Google, Amazon, and Apple, the first thing that comes to mind is technology and innovation. These companies are well known for their clever products and groundbreaking innovations, which remain a major part of their image and branding. In their sustainability efforts, this is no exception. Innovative designs that help reduce carbon emissions and unnecessary wastage are prominent among corporate campuses.
Large corporations usually have very specific ideas about the environment they want to set their organization in, so they often design their facilities from the ground up. This gives them the ability to integrate sustainable designs at every stage, from the materials they use to designs that enhance their area without raising environmental costs.
A great example of sustainability in a corporate campus can be found in the new Apple Park, a 2.8 million-square-foot building which will house over 12,000 employees. The first thing you will notice about this campus is just how much greenery it incorporates. This gigantic circle will encompass a small forest, with even more trees surrounding and enveloping it in natural beauty. Although the primary purpose of this landscape design is beautification, they will also be growing trees that produce fruits and vegetables. This will then go back into the company through the employee cafeteria.
Going even further, the design of the building is made so that air can circulate freely, reducing their need for air conditioning for the majority of the year. Apple has also made it a point to build less parking spaces than needed, so many will be encouraged to take public transportation or carpool on their way to work.
Corporate campuses are in a prime position to make sustainable decisions, and from what we have seen, they have been eager to do so. Many of the green buildings of the future will be designed by them, and as their technological prowess grows, so too will their sustainability improve.
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