Link to Destiny (BTW, the tacky website makes me want to vomit– tries too hard to appeal to emotions and nostalgia). If it succeeds, it’s going to be the largest mecca of consumerism in the land that invented it.
Thanks to Barnard’s Retail Consulting Group, citizens in Syracuse, NY might soon have the largest megamall in the country. From what I gather, its a $25B project — involving 1M sq ft in retail and entertainment space, a waterpark, and 2 golf courses– but the green part is that its going to be powered entirely by renewable energy and be completely self-sufficient. The “green” megamall will be complete with biodiesel generators, solar panels, and even mini hydroelectric plants operating from snow from the roof.
The mall developers were trying to decide whether to make something financially successful or “do something right”. They finally came to the conclusion that they could do both; hence the green megamall was born. Prior to plans being made, developers met with scientists and realized that their costs over time would be reduced greatly by using alternative sources of off-grid energy. Green technology can raise the cost of the project by more than 30%, but this could pay for itself in less than 10 years.
I know this is somewhat bizarre to be creating a megamall that’s green, but its worth mentioning. Howie Hawkins, who’s the mayoral candidate from the Syracuse Green party suggested that the nature of a mall is anti-ecological as it depends on sprawling consumerism that exploits cheap labor and natural resources the world over. I agree with him, but I also agree with the president of the US Green Building council — who says they’ll build the megamall anyway, regardless if its sustainably built or not.
I have mixed feelings about the introduction of this megamall but ultimately my views are pragmatic and utilitarian– I’d prefer to see no megamall constructed but if it has to be, it might as well be green, right?
On the website, it also claims that operating without fossil fuels is just the start– that they’ll also reuse 100% of their water, recycle everything possible, use sustainably harvested wood, and the food sold in Destiny USA’s restaurants will be organically or locally grown. Not too bad at all, but I’ll believe it when I see it.
It’d be really something if they could dictate that stores would have to be “green certified” in order to open at Destiny USA (no clothes that exploit cheap labor, using 100% recycled post consumer content in packaging, etc.)– Though I doubt most would go through with that.