ANDERSON, CALIF.—Just south of the town of Redding, Calif., a new 122-room green hotel is nearing completion in the town of Anderson. Gaia at Anderson, built for $14 million and scheduled to open in March, is the latest project from Wen-I Chang, creator of America’s first LEED Gold certified hotel—the Gaia Napa Valley Hotel and Spa in American Canyon, Calif.
Maintaining his high standards for the ultimate in an eco-friendly hotel, Chang has directed the construction crew to use state-of-the-art green building practices. Scraps of wood, cardboard and metal left over from the nearly completed construction are recycled. The contractor provided a recycling station for paints. The contractor also provided a recycling station for cardboard. Exceeding the standards of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), nearly 90 percent of the wood used in the construction of the hotel is certified as sustainably-harvested by the Forest Stewardship Council and comes from local timber sources within 500 miles of the hotel’s location.
Interiors are painted with low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) paints to ensure superior indoor air quality. Carpet and padding made from recycled materials has been purchased. Behind the walls, all the wood used in construction was certified as new growth wood. Outside the hotel is 11 acres of chemical-free landscaping.
Solar Panels Provide Power
The eco-friendly hotel features a full-service restaurant and more than 5,000 square feet of meeting space, all built under the rigorous construction guidelines of USGBC. Solar lighting—natural light from the sun—illuminates the public areas of the hotel through SolaTubes that focus the light of the sun into these areas, replacing electric lights and energy consumption during the day. Solar power provides more than 12 percent of the hotel’s electrical needs, while a real-time display in the lobby shows how much energy and water is being used by the hotel, and how much CO2—a common gas implicated in global warming—is being saved due to sophisticated energy conservation at the hotel.
Gaia’s Other Green Features
• Coatings, adhesives and sealants. Low-VOC sealants and adhesives were used throughout the hotel for carpet and construction. This will help improve the air quality within the hotel and have a positive effect on human health by improving the quality of air.
• Stone. All restrooms use recycled tiles and granite.
• Water. The project achieved a water use reduction of about 40 percent. Low-flush toilets use just 1 gpf (gallon per flush). Standard toilets produce 1.6 gallons per flush. All of the guestrooms are equipped with low-flow showerheads. The Koi pond uses recycled water from the site, which is then filtered and cleaned prior to entering the pond.
• Environmental quality. Appropriately sized and efficient HVAC units that use 15 percent less energy are used throughout. These units are quieter and more efficient than standard HVAC systems and use a more environmentally friendly refrigerant than is standard. Aluminum exterior grates were used in all entrances of the property. This helps to minimize dust and particulates entering the building, therefore improving air quality.
• Energy. All windows used are efficient, low energy transmittable and reduce glare. A cool reflective roof reflects heat, therefore saving money in cooling costs.
• Recycling. Recycling bins are located in guestrooms and around property. Newspapers are not delivered to each occupied room. They are located in the lobby and are available there for guests. Bulk soap and shower dispensers are used in all guestrooms. This helps to eliminate hundreds of pounds of plastic containers and packaging daily from miniature shower bottles and soap. Only recycled paper products are used at the hotel.
• Cleaning. Environmentally friendly cleaning products are used to clean the property.
Go to Gaia at Anderson.