What is the story behind the Green Team?
In 2012, one of our members recommended that we look into Austin Green Business Leaders program that was created by the Office of Sustainability (http://austintexas.gov/department/austin-green-business-leaders). After reviewing the program and its requirements we joined at the Gold level. One of the program requirements was for us to have a Green Team, so one was formed and currently we have 11 members in our team consisting of employees and gym members.
Currently, Castle Hill is the only fitness club/gym recognized by the City of Austin as a Green Business Leader. The fitness center has many green initiatives to provide a healthy and resource efficient environment.
Our Green Initiatives
Landfill Waste Reduction
- We currently offer a full composting and recycling program around the facility. In 2016 our patrons participation allowed us to cut down on landfill pick up to just once a week.
Power Consumption Practices
- 14 separate A/C units that are high-efficiency providing a pressurized building – fewer allergens, draft-free perimeter – with wireless thermostats with multi-schedule capabilities
- On-demand, tank-less hot water system
- Lighting – upgraded to LED throughout the facility reducing our power consumption by 8%
- Self-powered cardio machines –no electricity required
- Motion sensors in some bathrooms and rooms
Creating a Smaller Carbon Footprint
- We use biodegradable products for all aspects of cleaning
- We have a company bike available for running errands
- Use only 100% post-consumer recycled paper products
- We practice digital bookkeeping and minimize printing of receipts or expense files
- Client and Staff Green Commuter rewards program
- Onsite bike parking
Water Saving Initiatives
- Xeriscape landscaping
- Shower timers in all showers to encourage shorter showers
- In 2015 we upgraded our showerheads and faucets, reducing our facility usage by 17,000 gallons per month (a 15% reduction)
Future Initiatives include:
- Water fountain upgrades
- Converting all paper forms to digital
- Motion sensor lights throughout the whole facility
Our recent faucets/shower heads upgrade reduced our water use by about 8%. This may not seem like a huge amount, but in our environment, that equates to 115,000 gallons per year of saved water.
Adding a canopy to the Outdoor Studio added much utility to the space, especially in hot summer months.