Walgreens set to create first ever net-zero retail store using IES software

Graphic taken from IES’s website.
Graphic taken from IES’s website.

IES, a building performance analytics company with offices in Boston, said that its software analysis tool is being used to help the Walgreens pharmacy chain create the “first ever net-zero retail store” in a location just outside of Chicago.

Image courtesy of IES.

Walgreens estimates the store will use 200,000 kilowatt hours per year of electricity while generating 220,000 kilowatt hours per year, IES said in a press release. Set to open in Evanston, Ill., in November, the store will earn LEED Platinum, Living Building and Green Chill Platinum certifications.

The project is being carried out by a company called Cyclone Energy Group. The company is using an IES’s Virtual Environment software suite, which is also known as IESVE.

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“We knew going in that net-zero would not be easy to achieve,” Benjamin Skelton, president and chief executive of the Cyclone Energy Group, said in a statement. “Chicago is not a typical net-zero climate as it offers relatively few annual hours where outside conditions allow for natural ventilation and free conditioning, and the climate is not a high return-on-investment for renewable energy.”

Skelton added: “IESVE is being used as a commissioning tool throughout the design/construction progress to validate and inform the team about the anticipated performance of the building. Not typical to the construction industry, the commissioning team is incorporating energy modeling as a tool to validate the design of the project from pre-design through construction and ultimately in operation.”