Orion’s Medical District Branch earns LEED Silver

The recently opened branch of Orion Federal Credit Union, located at 821 Poplar, Memphis, Tennessee, has earned Silver certification through the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building program.

The building, located in Memphis’ Medical District, was constructed on a remediated brownfield site, which was once home to a gas station. The site was inactive, contaminated and rundown.  Orion chose the site based on its commitment to impact the community.

“We wanted to go beyond reactivating a dead street corner. We wanted to build something that members and the neighborhood would be proud of, and even more, would reflect the change and evolution going on in the area. For us, that meant a state-of-the-art LEED Silver® facility and a design that would embody openness and connection to the people we serve. We’re proud to reside in the Medical District and even our footprint is positively impacting this neighborhood,” stated Daniel Weickenand, Orion CEO.

The plan and construction of the building were guided by sustainable design and building principles that take into account social, environmental and economic priorities. This results in a high-performing building that is more energy efficient, uses less water, and has a higher indoor air quality.

Entegrity served as the LEED consultant and provided commissioning and energy modeling services. “The Orion project was particularly rewarding as the company cleaned up and reclaimed land in the Medical District,” said Entegrity founder, Chris Ladner.  “This in and of itself is an accomplishment. Achieving LEED silver underscores Orion’s commitment to the environment and the community.”

Project highlights for the building include:

  • Remediation and redevelopment of a Brownfield site, protecting future users from harmful materials and greatly reducing the need for the construction of new utilities or roads.
  • Location that is walkable for staff and customers, with easy access to public transportation.
  • Energy cost savings of 25% compared to a typical building of this type, utilizing efficient HVAC systems, all-LED lighting, and smart building construction.
  • Low-VOC materials and increased outside air in HVAC systems, ensuring fresh, healthful air for building staff and customers.
  • Materials used in construction containing high recycled content and sourced regionally when possible.
  • Water-saving landscape design, using drought-resistant plantings that eliminate the need for irrigation.

“Orion successfully transformed a contaminated urban property into a flourishing downtown commercial development. I applaud them for initiating this project and impacting a neighborhood vital to Memphis’ economic growth,” said Jeff Phillips, Tennessee Department of Environmental and Conservation.

Archimania served as architect for the project, and Grinder, Taber & Grinder, Inc. was the general contractor.