Canyon Lodge Redevelopment in Yellowstone National Park to be Heavy on Sustainability; Company Seeking Certification by Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED)

For Immediate Release
Photos Available

YELLOWSTONE NATIONAL PARK, July 3, 2014 – With five new lodges being developed to replace more than 300 cabins at Canyon Lodge in Yellowstone National Park – a $70 million redevelopment project – Xanterra Parks & Resorts is working hard to reduce the environmental footprint of its operations. Three of the lodges will open in 2015, and the remaining two lodges will open in 2016.

In addition to following practices that the company hopes will result in certification by the US Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) program, the company is analyzing every aspect of the process with one eye on sustainability.

“Maximizing sustainability is ingrained in our thought processes and is a significant part of our company culture,” said Jim McCaleb, general manager of Yellowstone National Park Lodges. “This project is huge for us, and the large scope creates more opportunities to do it right so that many generations can enjoy the park and the area surrounding the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River.”

As part of its concessions contract with the National Park Service (NPS), Xanterra has removed some 200 cabins so far and begun site preparations for the construction of five lodge buildings as well as the addition of paths that will make the area more biker- and hiker-friendly.

Canyon Lodge & Cabins currently features more than 400 cabins and two lodge buildings and is the largest accommodation complex in the park. Much of the development occurred during the late 1950s after the United States Congress appropriated funds to dramatically expand visitor services in many national parks. With the expansion of the country’s Interstate highway system and automobile travel becoming the norm for travelers in the U.S., the goal was to complete this far-reaching project by 1966 when NPS celebrated its 50th anniversary. With its 2016 completion date, the redevelopment coincides with 100th anniversary of the National Park service.

The redevelopment of Canyon Lodge will follow the four-step LEED process that begins even before the initial design is started and ends with a completed product. After construction is complete, USGBC reviews the completed project and if appropriate, certifies that they meet standards in areas that include sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources and indoor environmental quality. LEED also gives credit to project managers for sustainability education that is part of the final design and for exemplary performance on selected LEED credits.

Specific steps Xanterra is taking include:

  • Hiring a builder located within 500 miles of Canyon Lodge.
  • Sourcing many raw materials for assembly and finishing within 500 miles of Canyon Lodge whenever possible.
  • Reducing light pollution.
  • Recycling and reusing materials generated during demolition.
  • Using some cabins for structural firefighting training.
  • Using a modular building process. Since the industrial building process is closely controlled and efficient, materials are protected and processed to industrial specifications. This step reduces waste typically associated with on-site builds.
  • Installing low-emitting, recycled content carpet.
  • Using Marmoleum flooring comprised of all-natural rapidly renewable materials.
  • Installing high-energy efficient windows featuring low emissions.
  • Constructing trim, wainscoting, coat hangers and other wood products made from regional beetle-kill pine.
  • Installing automated “smart switches” in rooms for reduced energy usage.
  • Installing low-flow fixtures and toilets.
  • Installing plumbing fixtures featuring recycled content.
  • Installing recycled content countertops, window sills and back splashes fabricated from fly ash (a byproduct of coal burning) and ground recycled glass (some of it sourced from the park.

Xanterra operates lodges, restaurants, tours and activities in Yellowstone. To make reservations and for more information visit www.YellowstoneNationalParkLodges.com or call toll-free (1) 866-GEYSERLAND (1-866-439-7375) or (1) 307-344-7311.