Construction is among the human activities that most impact the environment worldwide. In 2011, Arcos Dorados’ (McDonald’s developmental licensee in Latin America) first green McDonald’s in Pilar, Argentina, obtained LEED® Gold for New Construction certification from the Green Building Council Institute (GBCI), becoming the first new building in Argentina with the certification.
The goal of the Pilar restaurant project was to give customers a comfortable, pleasant space and to create a more energy-efficient system. Among the highlights are a bike rack, wind generator, expanded McCafé area on the exterior terrace, and contemporary decor, with soft lights and comfortable dining areas. The design promoted proper use and reuse of potable water, as well as the use of renewable, recyclable and local materials. Additional features include:
- Collection systems for rainwater and gray water from hand washing that is filtered and reused for toilets and washing the parking lot
- Installation of CO2 sensors to guarantee the quality of interior air
Among the main achievements of the restaurant are a 22.6 percent decrease in energy consumption and a 45 percent decline in potable water consumption, compared to restaurants of similar size, over a period of one year.