The BTI-Greensburg John Deere Dealership Installs Tornado-Resistant Daylighting Systems and Other Sustainable Materials


Kelly and Mike set a goal of saving 42 percent in energy costs and looked for every opportunity to improve BTI-Greensburg’s efficiency. Experts at the Golden, Colo.-based National Renewable Energy Laboratory with the Washington-based U.S. Department of Energy’s support worked with BTI-Greensburg as part of their research to reduce retail building energy use by half. They helped identify, through modeling and life-cycle analysis, the most cost-effective energy-efficiency strategies.

In addition to the Daylighting Systems installed in the new facility, the BTI-Greensburg John Deere Dealership includes other materials designed to make the building energy efficient.

To help achieve LEED Platinum and outlast any future high-velocity winds, they incorporated 12 Daylighting Systems in their retail area’s roof

To help achieve LEED Platinum and outlast any future high-velocity winds, the building owners incorporated 12 Daylighting Systems in their retail area’s roof.

Insulation is key to keeping any building at the right temperature and minimizing heating and cooling costs. BTI-Greensburg exceeded standard R-levels in all areas by using:

  • R-16 highly insulated wall panels, typically used in refrigerated warehouses—two times better than the building code.
  • R-14 insulated panels in the garage doors—20 times better than standard practice.
  • R-38 insulation in the roof—two times better than standard.
  • R-3.8 under the slab floor to minimize heat loss.
  • Daylighting to eliminate heat from electric lighting, which increases cooling.

To further minimize electricity use, sensors detect occupancy and turn off unneeded lights. The lighting controls also automatically balance electric lighting with daylighting for maximum savings.

The BTI-Greensburg building features a highly efficient radiant heating system in the concrete slab floor. The system’s water is heated by recycled oil from BTI’s normal operations, which reduces the need for natural gas.

A high-efficiency 16 SEER variable-air-volume system provides heating, cooling and outdoor air. Additionally, motion detectors and individual controls help minimize the use of the heating and cooling systems.

To help power the dealership, BTI installed two wind turbines (5 and 1.8 kilowatt) to offset about 8 percent of the building’s electricity use. Impressed by the 5-kW model chosen for the site, other family members are now involved in a new venture, BTI Wind Energy. It has become the North American distributor for the specific brand of wind turbine and has created more than 100 new green jobs at dealerships throughout the U.S.

In addition to being a part of Greensburg’s commitment to building back green, BTI-Greensburg has also become a “John Deere Place” design—a model for dealers who are building and remodeling across North America. The Moline, Ill.-based John Deere Co. would like to see these energy-saving and environmentally friendly features incorporated into future dealerships.

According to Kelly, “Going green was important to us to be sure we’re being good citizens of Greensburg and helping the environment.”

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