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Greening of Hospitality Industry
Ecoworks Designates Cobo Center A Sustainable Comunities Champion

Thom Connors
, SMG regional vice president and general manager of Cobo Center, is pleased to announce that Cobo Center is the proud recipient of the EcoWorks Sustainable Communities Champion award.

During the annual EcoWorks breakfast Sept 19, Cobo Center, along with three other agencies leading the Detroit area in sustainability practices, was designated a champion for aligning with the EcoWorks mission of large scale innovative education, training, consulting, social business and advocacy in the sustainable use of energy natural resources.

At the event, a spokesman for EcoWorks explained, "Detroit Regional Convention Facility Authority (DRCFA) has helped to set an example for what we can accomplish when we unite as a region. The renovation of Cobo Center helps secure its position as a symbol of Detroit, but that alone wouldn't garner an award. In addition to the regional cooperation and the great greening work that they did, they have shared the story with clients, conference attendees and our region. The Cobo Center hosts 'temporary communities' if you will, leaders from many fields come to the center for a brief time of learning. And now each of those communities experiences what green renovation can do." The Cobo Center Green Committee was formed in 2011 to develop green event support and achieve green certifications for the center. Cobo became the largest Green Venues Michigan facility in 2012.

Now in the final phase of a $279 million renovation, building features like a living green roof, Kone EcoMod energy saving escalators and elevators, dock enclosures, induction lighting that uses 40% energy in all exhibit halls, and new energy saving HVAC units are already in place.

"We are very proud of this recognition from EcoWorks and the Detroit area sustainability network. However, Cobo Center is not content to rest on what has been accomplished. Our Green Committee is moving very quickly to rapidly increase our waste diversion rate, implement a kitchen waste composting program and apply for other green certifications that will establish Cobo as an industry leader," said Connors.