The number of green design materials available has exploded in recent years. Products that used to be offered in limited colors or designs are now as varied as their traditional counterparts. Because of consumer demand, sustainable painting, flooring, and countertop products that might have been less durable and expensive in the past are now stronger, longer-lasting, and often more affordable.
Tracy Zollinger Turner
Tracy Zollinger Turner is an award-winning feature writer, editor and web-content expert based in Columbus, Ohio. She has written extensively about education, the arts, culture and civic life in the Midwest for a variety of publications, including The Columbus Dispatch, Citysearch.com, Columbus Alive, Public Art Review and Ohio Magazine.
The things that help a building use the least possible amount of electricity and natural gas are central to what makes it green. Making an existing structure more energy-efficient can be done in broad strokes or with baby steps.
A growing number of people have become aware of and even begun to measure their personal, ecological footprint on the planet. Others are concerned about healthy living and working spaces free of toxins. Some people simply see greening their properties as an effective cost-cutting measure or wise investment.
When downtown Columbus’ City Center Mall opened its doors in 1989, millions of people swarmed through them in the early weeks. Its collection of high-end department stores, boutiques, and casual restaurants kept it bustling for several years. Flash forward fifteen years, and it started to become a ghost town inside, one major retailer after another leaving many of its vast indoor spaces vacant.