Walgreens announced plans to build what it believes could be the nation’s first net zero energy store, taking ‘green’ energy to a new level of efficiency.  The store, which could produce energy equal to or greater than the amount it consumes, will be powered by a combination of solar panels, wind turbines, and geothermal energy.

The specifics, according to a Walgreens press release, reveal that the store plans to generate electricity and reduce its usage by more than 40 percent through several technologies including:

  • 800+ roof-top solar panels
  • Two wind turbines
  • Geothermal energy obtained by drilling 550-feet into the ground below the store, where temperatures are more constant and can be tapped to heat or cool the store in winter and summer
  • LED lighting and daylight harvesting
  • Carbon dioxide refrigerant for heating, cooling and refrigeration equipment
  • Energy efficient building materials.

Engineering estimates, which can vary due to factors such as weather, store operations and systems performance, indicate that the store will use 200,000 kilowatt hours per year of electricity while generating 256,000 kilowatt hours per year.

Located in Evanston, IL at the intersection of Chicago Avenue and Keeney Street at the place of a current Walgreens store demolition, the store could become truly one of a kind from the revolutionary drug retailer. Already an innovator in green technology, Walgreens is paving the way for future enhancements to retail stores and becoming a true leader in the industry.  In addition, the company will attempt to obtain LEED Platinum status for the new store, which is the most rigorous green designation by the U.S. Green Building Council.  It will also be Walgreens second showcase project in the Department of Energy Better Buildings Challenge. Through the Better Buildings Challenge, Walgreens has committed to a chain wide 20 percent energy reduction by 2020.

Prior to the current demolition, Walgreens operated two locations in the Evanston zip code of 60202.

Evanston, IL – Zip Code 60202


Area Stores

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Jewel – Osco






Sam’s Club






Source: 2012 Chain Store Guide Drug Industry Market Share – Zip Code Edition