McDonald’s Hamburger University (HU) is an international training and leadership development institute. HU, known as McDonald’s University in Brazil, officially reopened its facilities in April 2011 after an extensive remodeling, which included sustainable features to ensure proper use of natural resources.
Sustainability was considered in all stages of the Brazil HU remodeling process. The remodeled facilities were retrofitted to allow responsible use of natural resources and a more efficient structural model. All walls, including office space, restrooms and the lobby were painted with heavy-metal-free paint produced in a low-emissions process. All debris generated during construction was managed. Metal, cardboard and wood were separated into different dumpsters and then collected by a specialized company for recycling. Other waste was sent to properly accredited landfills. More than six tons of metal was recycled. Dual-flush toilets were installed, for a potential reduction in water consumption of five times the volume as compared to conventional models. New taps also provide significant water savings, using up to 55 percent less than standard taps. An energy management system operates electronic devices to increase their performance. LED lighting was installed to reduce electricity consumption while increasing wattage and useful life. Natural light was taken advantage of in lighting design. The furniture was made with certified wood and the carpet was manufactured with minimal waste of raw materials and energy.
The building is in the process of obtaining LEED® certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. The Brazil HU, in addition to being a center for training and leadership development, now plays a prominent role in sustainability as well.