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July 7, 2011-Dalton, GA- USFloors’ investments in solar power generation were included as part of an article on Georgia’s solar industry in the July 2011 issue of Georgia Trend, a magazine focusing on Georgia business, politics, and economic development.
The article highlights USFloors’ tremendous contribution to Georgia’s renewable energy supply, in spite of the state’s lethargic embrace of its growing solar industry. Notable are the 1701 solar photovoltaic panels which cover a large portion of the 100,000 sq. ft. roof of USFloors’ Corporate Center and Manufacturing facility in Dalton. The system generates 350 kilowatts of clean, renewable solar energy and is a significant portion of the 500 kilowatt total system that makes USFloors the largest commercial solar power producer in the state of Georgia. According the USFloors President/CEO Piet Dossche, the companies commitment to solar power “takes our commitment to sustainability another step further.” USFloors is the leading supplier of sustainable cork, bamboo, and FSC-certified hardwood floors in the US.
USFloors 500 kilowatt system captures enough energy to power 54 homes and will offset more than 11,000 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) over the 25 year lifespan of the panels.
To read the Georgia Trend article in it’s entirety, click here.
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06.14.2011– CHICAGO — USFContract, a leading cork, bamboo and hardwood flooring supplier for contract interiors, announced today that the company’s new Cork Décor, Volume 2, captured a Gold Best of NeoCon Award in the resilient flooring category.
Cork Décor is a vinyl-encapsulated cork tile that carries a 15 year heavy commercial warranty, likely the only commercial cork floor with such a warranty. Cork Décor Volume 2 made its debut at Chicago’s Merchandise Mart during NeoCon 2011, the National Exposition of Contract Furnishings.
Best of Neocon, presented by Contract Magazine, is awarded by the Best of Neocon jury, composed of 45 corporate, government, and institutional facilities management executives, interior designers, and architects, who are responsible for selecting and buying furniture and furnishings for their specific organizations or clients. The seven jury teams visited Merchandise Mart showrooms and temporary market suites to judge each product in person. Manufacturers or product designers had the opportunity to explain and discuss details of the entered product and answer jurors’ questions.
A mere two years in existence, USFContract has managed to capture this coveted award which has eluded many mature contract commercial companies with many more years in the contract market. Other companies with products entered in the resilient category included Mannington, Johnsonite, Amtico, Centiva, and Karndean among others.
USFContract’s Cork Décor from Natural Cork® takes traditional cork flooring and adds extreme durability to create a collection of eco-friendly flooring designed to perform in the most demanding commercial applications. The high performance attributes are achieved by applying an acrylic nano bead lacquer finish to the surface of the vinyl clad cork core. The nano beads are embedded into the top layer to provide improved scratch, scuff, stain, and slip resistance. Cork Décor also utilizes Acrodur®, a water based binder that significantly reduces the level of emissions without compromising the technical performance of the
floor. The vinyl backing provides dimensional stability and strength to the Cork Décor tiles making it highly resistant to tearing and moisture. Natural Cork® Cork Décor Tiles are certified by the very stringent GreenGuard® Children and Schools Indoor Air Quality certification program for low emitting interior building materials, furnishings, and finish systems. GreenGuard Children & Schools Certified products can also be used as a strategy to earn valuable credits in the CHPS Best Practices Manual for K-12 schools, U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Green Building Rating System, Green Guide for Healthcare, NAHB Green Building Guidelines, Green Globes, Regreen and many other local green building codes.
USFContract is a division of USFloors, the only US-based cork and bamboo flooring supplier with manufacturing facilities located in the U.S. Founded in May 2001, USFloors features state‐of‐the‐art finishing and profiling lines for flooring and moldings. USFloors’ manufacturing facility is the only manufacturing facility in Georgia utilizing photovoltaic panels to generate clean, renewable energy. USFloors also manufactures a wide assortment of bamboo and distinctive hardwood products. USFloors is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council.
To learn more about Cork Décor or order samples, visit usfcontract.com.
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Occasionally we get testimonials about how much people love their Natural Cork floors that we just have to share with you. This is another of those.
In the interest of full disclosure, Jim Ed Oberst works for a company called Brewco Marketing Group. Brewco designed, built, and manages the Decor[k] mobile cork showroom that is touring home shows across America, educating consumers about the unmatched beauty and virtues of cork flooring. Decor[k] is an outreach of APCOR, the Portuguese Cork Association, of which USFloors is a member. If you want to know more about the Decor[k] tour and mobile showroom, or you want learn about cork flooring, or your interested to see what HGTV celebrity designer Candice Olson thinks about cork flooring, or you just want to browse a really cool website, visit www.realcorkfloors.com. Now back to the story…
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USFloors is the largest producer of solar energy in Georgia.
November 12, 2010, Dalton, GA – USFloors has commissioned its third solar photovoltaic (PV) project intended to supply half of the facility’s energy. This installation of 365.04 kw is the largest solar array in Georgia, eclipsing the record once held by the Georgia Tech Natatorium, installed for the 1996 Olympics. Alpharetta-based United Renewable Energy installed 1521 Suniva solar panels and an SMA Sunny Central Inverter for this ARRA, GEFA Grant funded project . The combined output of all three USFloors solar arrays will total over half a Megawatt, and makes USFloors the largest producer of solar energy in the state of Georgia. USFloors is producing enough solar energy to power 54 average American homes, offsetting 11,400 tons of CO2 and nearly 23 million vehicle miles.
Commerce in Dalton has thrived for decades, providing jobs, growth and a competitive marketplace. In recent years, the manufacturers that made Dalton the Flooring Capital of the World have been challenged to survive changes in the economy. USFloors, a distributor and manufacturer of eco-friendly cork and bamboo, has “greenstreamed”
their operations, adding jobs while much of Dalton struggles with unemployment, and making investments in renewable energy. USFloors has installed over 540 kW of solar panels and is in the process of developing a LEED certified facility and has emerged as a leader in sustainable flooring. Now, they have commissioned the largest solar array in the state. USFloors is reducing its carbon footprint by walking the talk.
Piet Dossche, President of USFloors, Inc., began his green campaign in 2007, becoming the only cork and bamboo flooring supplier with manufacturing capability in the country. A recipient of the Green Step Award in 2010, the company is committed to exclusively using sustainable resources for its flooring, and complying with rigorous U.S. and European environmental standards. By following strict Forest Stewardship Council guidelines, USFloors avoids clear cut or non-managed plantations, and promotes green building through renewable energy and LEED initiatives. This has earned them a position of respect within the sustainability community. USFloors is now the largest producer of solar energy in the state of Georgia. To install this solar array, the company took advantage of a 30% Federal Grant and a 35% State Grant given by the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority.
USFloors’ expansion of their solar investment sets an example as a cleaner, greener way to power a manufacturing business. According to Dossche, “USFloors strives to be an example of how a privately-owned company can be a part of the effort to contribute to the solution of cleaner power.” In building the state’s flagship solar array, USFloors partnered with local, Georgia-based companies to ensure that the state’s economy was benefitted as well. Norcross-based Suniva provided the solar panels for the array. Georgia-based United Renewable Energy expanded its Dalton workforce to maintain a commitment to developing skilled labor in the communities it services.
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The blog at naturalinteriors.com features an article about USFloors’ patent pending Corboo – a hybrid strand woven bamboo and cork floor – being installed the Campus Commons at Miami University of Ohio. Campus Commons is a complex of 18 duplexes and 3 single family homes, still under construction. The project was designed by Architects Plus in Cincinnati and is being built LEED for Homes standards.
Throughout the project, Schumacher & Co. Custom Hardwood Floors of Milford, OH, has installed Corboo from USFloors. Read the entire article at http://www.naturalinteriors.com/2010/07/customer-gallery-2/
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The largest solar array in the state is breaking ground this week, and you can visit it from 9 am – 2 pm on October 2nd, as part of the National Solar Tour. Visitors may see a portion of the array at the USFloors Headquarters located at: 3580 Corporate Drive, Dalton, Georgia, 30721.
Dalton, GA. – USFloors, a nationwide leader in sustainable flooring, will commence the installation of a 365 kw solar array on its facilities. This array will be the third for USFloors and will bring their total to well over half a Megawatt. This installation will make USFloors the largest producer of solar in the State of Georgia.
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Cincinnati, OH – Here’s an interesting Natural Bamboo flooring installation if I’ve ever seen one. These photos come courtesy of Ben Lanich, Store Manager of Carpetland Carpet One in Cincinnati, an independent retailer who carries USFloors Natural Bamboo flooring line. The customer, Evergreen Holistic Learning Center, created a one-of-a-kind custom installation by mixing Natural, Spice, and Stained Cognac Horizontal Bamboo.
According to Mr. Lanich, “[Evergreen Holistic] is a learning center for local colleges and high schools with a main focus on green continuous building and farming practices. The customer wanted a unique, sustainable floor that they could use as a teaching tool and a conversation piece. I think they got exactly what they wanted!”
Located on 8 1/2 acres in the Spring Grove Village community, Evergreen is strongly dedicated to serving people throughout all stages of life, and particularly emphasizes the support and advancement of the urban community.
For more photos of Evergreen’s beautiful Natural Bamboo floors, click here to visit our Flickr site.
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Style Meets Sustainability in New York City’s Herald Square
NEW YORK – New York, a city already famous for high style and a cosmopolitan culture, got a little more chic with the launch of the North American Décor(k) Tour in Herald Square today, courtesy of the Portuguese Cork Association (APCOR).
The goal of the Décor(k) Tour – which will visit 16 cities across the United States and Canada – is to educate consumers about the different styles and varieties of Portuguese cork flooring, and will feature a 53 foot-long mobile showroom designed by “Divine Design” host Candice Olson. Inside the showroom, visitors will enjoy a “feet on” experience of cork flooring’s unique comfort and resiliency while viewing different room layouts and flooring applications designed by Olson. Additional displays will allow visitors to see how cork stands up to moisture, heavy foot traffic and allergens, providing users with durable, comfortable flooring that can last years.
With more families spending time “living” on the floor, the floor has taken on a larger role as a functional living space. Therefore, it has become more important for flooring to be comfortable, durable, stylish and highly functional. Cork flooring fulfills all of these requirements. Another important benefit is that cork is the most environmentally friendly flooring choice because it is completely renewable, 100 percent natural and recyclable — three essential qualities for a modern and environmentally friendly society. Incredible inherent properties, including sound and temperature insulation, cushioning and water resistance provide homeowners even more reasons to choose cork as a flooring option.
“The choice of flooring is always an integral element in my designs,” said Olson. “When homeowners are building their nests, they must think about how much time will be spent on their floors. Cork flooring is a perfect choice for the home because it can provide a desired, stylish look while remaining functional and environmentally friendly.”
Through Olson’s beautifully designed settings for the Décor(k) Tour, it is easy to see that cork flooring is the ultimate in eco-chic. With inspirational designs ranging from traditional and vintage to artistic and modern, luxurious textures and shades, classic patterns and elegant finishes, the options available for cork flooring in North American homes are truly limitless. It has become a viable contender as the centerpiece of any home.
Cork is more than 50 percent air, which makes it lightweight and highly resilient. Consequently, cork often does not show dents or grooves the same way wood flooring can. It has excellent insulating properties and is warmer under foot than a cold tile. It is also allergy free and easy to maintain – great for a healthy, safe home.
“Cork has been used as flooring for a very long time because of its natural beauty, durability and renewability,” said Piet Dossche, chairman of APCOR North America Flooring Group and president & CEO of USFloors, Inc. “New finishing techniques and improved technologies have revived an interest in cork flooring. No other floor covering can match the combined benefits of cork.”
Cork’s journey begins in the montado (the Portuguese cork oak forest) where the time-honored tradition of the cork harvest takes place. Only after a maturation period of 25 years have these majestic giant cork oak trees carefully transformed their outer shell into a thing of beauty. This natural process gives way to cork flooring. During the harvesting of the bark, which can only take place every nine years, the tree is never cut down or harmed. The quality of cork actually improves with every harvest.
The cork oak forest has been developed and maintained to sustain a triple bottom line industry – one that is good for the people, for the planet and for the economy. Portuguese cork makes for authentic, high quality and eco-efficient cork flooring that is created with true craftsmanship and care.
Following the New York City launch on September 1, the Décor(k) mobile cork flooring showroom will visit these U.S. and Canadian cities on the following dates:
Boston: Sept. 17 – 19, 2010
Atlanta: Oct. 23, 2010
Vancouver: Feb. 8, 2011
Montreal: Sept. 23, 2010
Toronto: Sept. 29 – Oct. 3, 2010
Dallas: Jan. 20, 2011
Las Vegas: Jan. 25 – 27, 2011
Salt Lake City: Feb. 12, 2011
Denver: Feb. 15, 2011
Buffalo: Oct. 8, 2010
Washington, DC: Oct. 20, 2010
San Francisco: Feb. 1, 2011
Seattle: Feb. 4, 2011
Chicago: Jun. 14 – 16, 2011
Los Angeles: Jun. 24 – 26, 2011
For more information about the Décor(k) Tour and the unique style and esthetic aspects of cork flooring, visit www.realcorkfloors.com.
APCOR’s mission is to represent and promote the Portuguese Cork Industry, with more than 250 members, representing around 80 percent of the total national cork production and 85 percent of all cork exports. APCOR is also responsible for promotional activities, with added value to cork, on both a national and international scale, providing, in addition, an extensive Information Resource Centre on cork.
The Décor(k) mobile showroom has been created by APCOR to tell the story of cork flooring, beginning with the cork oak and the harvest of the cork bark through to the versatility and beauty of the finished product from an interior designer’s perspective. Visitors to the Décor(k) showroom will learn how the cork oak bark is fashioned into beautiful cork flooring and will be invited to experience six different room concepts created by Divine Design’s Candice Olson and featuring the very best of Portuguese cork flooring. The Décor(k) Tour will be visiting 16 cities in the United States and Canada over the next ten months.
To view more photos from the New York City Decor[k] launch and see photos inside the Decor[k] mobile showroom, visit USFloors on flikr.com by clicking here.
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Floor Covering Weekly Honors Company for Contribution to Renewable Energy
Dalton, GA – USFloors has been awarded the GreenStep Award in the Process category as presented by Floor Covering Weekly for its 144 kw photovoltaic solar array and their newest warehouse in Dalton, GA. The Process Category refers to companies that implement a practice or process improvement that reduces negative environmental impact or promotes sustainability. The awards are selected by an independent panel that includes industry professionals from trade associations, retailers, and environmental experts.
The 144 kw array is currently the largest commercial solar installation in the state of Georgia. The system generates 100% of the power required for the buildings energy needs. This is not the first array for USFloors, a sustainable flooring manufacturer, but for now its largest.
Other manufacturers receiving awards included Mohawk, Interface, Anderson Hardwoods, Crossville, Mannington Commercial, and Mullican. USFloors’ President and CEO Piet Dossche commented, “We are honored to be among the leaders in the flooring industry who are working diligently to accelerate our contributions to sustainability and environmentally responsible practices. We will continue to expand our efforts in promoting sustainable flooring and in clean, renewable solar energy.”
Dalton, GA – USFloors Inc. has achieved GREENGUARD® Children & Schools Certification for it’s line of Natural Cork® Floating Floors with the Endura AR™ finish as well as it’s entry level Ecocork® Floating Floors. Earlier this year, USFloors achieved the Children & Schools certification for its Natural Bamboo® flooring line, the only bamboo flooring line to achieve this stringent certification standard for indoor air quality. With the addition of the Natural Cork® floating floors, USFloors is the only flooring supplier to have both cork and bamboo flooring lines with GREENGUARD Children & Schools certification in it’s product portfolio.
© 2014 USFloors Inc. All rights reserved.
USFloors is a Dalton, GA based manufacturer and distributor of unique and sustainable natural flooring products such as cork, bamboo, and other natural hardwoods.