Inditex has opened a highly eco-efficient Zara store on Rome’s Via del Corso 189. With this launch, the Inditex group reaches the 5000-store mark with stores in 77 countries.

The new Zara store reflects the ‘2011-2015 Sustainable Inditex Plan’ announced at the company’s most recent annual general meeting by the group’s Deputy Chairman and CEO, Pablo Isla. Inditex wants to develop and implement the most up-to-date environmental sustainability standards at each of the group’s stores to achieve maximum eco-efficiency at its stores. Isla set a strategic target by 2020 for all Inditex group establishments to meet these criteria, which are guiding the launch of the company’s newly-created locations. “Environmental issues are a key component of the Inditex global strategy,” said Isla. “This project marks a turning point in how we think of retail space.”

The Zara store is the most innovative example of this policy. The entire renovation was geared towards achieving a platinum rating at LEED, a certification for sustainable architecture that is considered the most demanding scoring system of its kind in the world.

The store is housed in the building Palazzo Bocconi, whose history dates back more than 120 years.
The store is housed in the Palazzo Bocconi
The store is housed in the Palazzo Bocconi
Inditex hired the prestigious Italian architecture company Duccio Grasse to give the new establishment a unique look. The renovation drew on extensive historical documentation of the building’s original architectural characteristics and included many elements that allow the store to blend historical tradition with contemporary architecture. In addition, the store consumes 30% less energy, uses 70% less water and avoids more than 200 tons of CO2 atmospheric emissions per year.

Many features contribute to the store’s eco-efficiency: The indoor air quality (like CO2 levels, humidity and noise) monitors automatically. There are motion detectors installed that turn on and off the lights in low-traffic areas - it was designed to make maximum use of natural light. An air curtain system at the entrance doors prevents abrupt indoor air temperature changes, thus there is no need to run heating or cooling systems. The light is dimmed by more than 50% when the store is closed, and the establishment uses a grey water recovery system to lower water consumption.