Center News file photo
More than 30 Washington state companies were nominated, but the Hutchinson Center stood among the winners of a 2010 Environmental Excellence Award from the Association of Washington Business. The Center received the award for its innovative and environmentally sustainable practices at a luncheon held May 11 in Spokane, in conjunction with the association’s annual spring board meeting.
"The 10 companies we celebrate represent some of the best examples of free enterprise and innovation our state has to offer," said AWB President Don Brunell. “Their work is essential to helping jump-start our economy, preserving precious natural resources and moving Washington forward.”
Hutchinson Center: Environmental innovator
The AWB recognized the Center for the way in which it sustainably evolved from a collection of buildings in 1975 to consolidation in the 1980s on a 14.3-acre campus near Lake Union. Since consolidation, Center leaders have:
- Made environmental excellence and sustainable practices a top priority in all buildings
- Attained Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design or “LEED” certification for the Arnold Building by the utilization of environmentally friendly building practices
- Achieved excellence in recycling: During campus development 75 percent of construction waste was recycled and 20 percent of the building materials were recycled
- Kept up with changing technology by continually retrofitted existing buildings
- Reduced the institution’s overall carbon footprint by 47 percent, a commitment that extends to water conservation—the Center conserves 540,000 gallons of domestic water annually by harvesting groundwater
- Salvaged and reused many chemicals involved in research
- Provided employees with alternatives to the single-occupant vehicle commute. More than 200 employees bike to work each day, and the Center offers biking workshops and financial incentives for bike tune-ups. Another 1,750 use the Center’s subsidized Hutch Pass to ride public transportation, 423 participate in carpools and 74 use vanpools.
The AWB’s annual Environmental Excellence Awards recognize member companies of all sizes and types across the state for their initiative, innovation and outstanding achievements in environmental compliance, protection and conservation. The awards focus on:
- Actions that create a better environment
- Products that help environmental quality
- Actions to prevent or reduce environmental problems and conserve resources
- Processes, including education and business operations, that improve the environment.
Formed in 1904, the AWB serves as both the state’s chamber of commerce and the manufacturing and technology association, and is one of two chambers in the country accredited with distinction by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
[Adapted from an AWB news release, which contains the full list of award recipients.]