The City of Meridian has ‘stepped up’ as a leader to improve the air in the Treasure Valley and to avoid non-attainment. Examples of these efforts are: our participation in Clean Air Zone Idaho; have flexible work schedules and offer Virtual Private Network (VPN) to work at home; promote carpooling and offer alternative transportation programs; reducing citizen trips to City Hall through autopay and doing business online; and, requiring a dustless surface for areas that vehicles drive on. Click here for a more detailed list of our efforts related to air quality.
In addition to air quality initiatives, Meridian became the first city in Idaho to be issued a Class A Reclaimed Water Permit. The permit signifies a change in how we use our existing water resources. Soon we will begin using highly treated, or reclaimed, water instead of irrigation water on city parks and open spaces. This allows conservation of ground water and reduces our discharge flows into the Boise River.
In 2010, the City adopted an Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy that incorporates the City’s mission, vision, and ongoing initiatives into the energy planning process. This strategy serves as a guide for achieving both short-range and long-range objectives for energy efficiency, reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, and the creation of sustainable jobs. Short-range energy goals will be achieved by allocating funds for specific Council-approved projects. The comprehensive list of projects, programs, policies, and implementation measures identified in this plan will facilitate the City’s long-range energy success during the next decade.
We have seen the restoration of 700 linear feet of Five Mile Creek. The Public Works Department worked with partners to move this first-of-its-kind project forward in Meridian where we a portion of the creek was restored to a more natural condition and the floodplain was preserved from development at no cost to the City.
City Hall has historical significance and meaning in our design, greater efficiency and service to our customers, and is a prime example of Meridian’s efforts to be good stewards of the environment. Through this design, we received SilverLEED - Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design - Certification. This “Green building” standard refers to the design, construction, and operation of buildings in an environmentally friendly way.
This was accomplished by several approaches: First, we cleaned the site and soil, removing 600 tons of contaminated materials and 8,600 cubic yards of contaminated soil. Then, many of the building materials were chosen for minimal environmental impact and recyclability: insulated windows; low volume water fixtures; roofing material that deflects the summer heat; and light fixtures that determine how much light is needed. These are just some of the “green” attributes of the building. Idaho Power tells us that our annual power savings could provide power for 56 homes for a year. Additionally, more than 80% of all construction refuse was recycled; we designated a no-smoking campus; employees are incentivized with preferred parking to carpool or drive low-emission vehicles; we provide on-site bike storage, and showers and lockers for employees to bike or walk to work.
CLICK HERE to View a Brochure on Meridian City Hall's Green Features
As you see, its not just talk about environmental stewardship; we’re stepping up.