The U.S. Green Building Council has awarded a new Cub Foods store on St. Paul's East Side with a LEED Gold status rating for its environmentally sustainable design.
The Phalen Cub branch joins only two other grocery stores nationwide to achieve the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Gold rating.
The grocery store features skylights with a solar powered GPS system to track and redirect sunlight and a landscape irrigation system that uses 50 percent less water than standard systems.
Environmentally-friendly LED lights illuminate the store's parking lot. Construction workers also reused or recycled half of the waste from buildings torn down on the site.
"It's exciting that a grocery store that adds so much value to the Payne-Phalen neighborhood is also setting new standards for how such a store can be sustainably developed in an urban core," St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman said in a statement.
The Council awards the rating to buildings that accumulate enough "points" for certain eco-friendly features. The gold rating is the second highest certification level.
The grocery store joins over 20 other LEED certified or registered buildings in St. Paul, including two city-owned properties. The Western District Police Station received the first LEED Gold certification for police stations in the state. Construction is underway for a new fire department headquarters on West 7th St. that meets LEED standards.