A Look InsiDDe Dunkin’ Donuts’ LEED Certified Restaurant and Recently Opened Green Restaurant in St. Petersburg, Florida

By Mary Ann DiMascio, Senior CSR Specialist, Dunkin’ Brands

In honor of Earth Day, we thought DD fans might be interested in learning more about how Dunkin’ Donuts is continuing to explore and implement more sustainable construction and remodeling solutions in our restaurants.  In 2008, Dunkin’ Donuts opened its first “green” restaurant in St. Petersburg at 7595 4th Street North, which later achieved Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver certification in 2010. More recently in early 2012, Dunkin’ Donuts opened its second “green” restaurant in St. Petersburg at 1046 4th Street North, which is also in the process of applying for LEED certification. Both restaurants are run by Dunkin’ Donuts franchisee Robert Aziz and his team.                                                                                                                 

fileDunkin' Donuts' 2nd "green" restaurant at 1046 4th Street in St. Petersburg, Florida

What features make these Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants “green”?

In both restaurants, the Dunkin’ Donuts team and franchisee Robert Aziz have worked to implement a number of internal and external elements which will increase energy efficiency and minimize the restaurant’s impact on the environment. For example, to reduce electricity, the restaurants feature:

  • Energy-efficient insulated concrete foam walls
  • Energy-efficient lighting
  • High-performance HVAC and refrigeration equipment
  • A state of the art energy monitoring system  

fileBoth restaurants feature a modern and more energy efficient interiors and exteriors.

To reduce the restaurant’s use of water, both were constructed with water saving elements, making the restaurants over 30% more water efficient than a typical restaurant including:

  • Super low-flow or no-flow fixtures and aerators have been installed in all restrooms, and for all hand-sinks in the kitchen areas.
  • The second restaurant features a rainwater harvesting system for landscape irrigation.  

fileRainwater harvesting system for landscape irrigation.

Both restaurants also offer unique “green” products and practices, including:

  • Reusable Mug Program - Customers are encouraged to bring their own mug, which can be refilled at a discounted price. [Note: Many Dunkin’ Donuts restaurants offer reusable mug programs. Ask your local DD if they’re participating in a reusable mug program!]
  • Food Donation - Leftover baked goods will be donated to a local food bank. 
  • Used Coffee Grounds Composting - All used coffee grounds are collected twice a week and used by local urban farmers for composting and soil improvement.

fileParking for electric cars!

Dunkin’ Donuts’ newest “green” restaurant in St. Petersburg (1046 4th Street North) is also home to the brand’s first-ever electric car charging station and offers a community gallery filled with works of art from local artisans and students.

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Why are both restaurants located in St. Petersburg? Will Dunkin’ Donuts ever open “green” restaurants in other cities?

St. Petersburg is an exciting market for Dunkin’ Donuts. St. Petersburg was designated as the first city in the state to become a "Green City" by the Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC). After opening Dunkin’ Donuts’ first LEED certified restaurant in St. Petersburg in 2008, we are proud to see franchisee Robert Aziz further support St. Petersburg’s commitment to implementing strategies for a sustainable future with the opening of a second “green” Dunkin’ Donuts restaurant.

In addition to the LEED certified and ‘green’ restaurant in St. Petersburg, all of Dunkin’ Donuts’ new and remodeled restaurants leverage green design and construction elements. It is our hope to continue implementing green design and construction elements in new and existing restaurants when possible.


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What type of impact do you hope both of these restaurants will have in their local communities?

Our learnings from the first LEED store provided the foundation for our newest green restaurant and recommendations to make many new and remodeled restaurants greener. 

Since opening the brand’s first “green” restaurant 2008, franchise owner Robert Aziz and his team have donated over 75,000 pounds of used coffee grounds and paper products to be composted. They have also donated thousands of donuts and muffins to a local food bank. 

In the community of St. Petersburg, both restaurants have become a destination for teachers and students from the local community that want to know more about sustainability and green building.  As such, both restaurants have special signage highlighting all of the green elements in the restaurant.


fileInterior of the newest "green" St. Petersburg restaurant.

Where can I go for more information about Dunkin’ Donuts CSR and sustainability efforts?

Dunkin’ Brands, the parent company of Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins, published its first corporate social responsibility (CSR) report, Serving Responsibly in August 2011, which outlines Dunkin’ Brands’ ongoing commitment to grow its business in a sustainable manner while taking into consideration the needs of guests, employees, franchisees, local communities and the environment: http://www.dunkinbrands.com/Responsibility/CSR_Annual_Report_2010.pdf