The Toyota Logistic Services New Distribution Center is scheduled for completion later this year. This innovative 166,500 square foot facility is dedicated to processing over 200,000 auto imports annually at the Port of Long Beach. Targeted to achieve LEED Gold, it incorporates Carbon Neutral, Tri-Generation, Fuel Cell  and Hydrogen strategies. Mark Yamauchi, LEED AP, is the Sustainability Manager for Toyota North America, and helped to lead the project team toward this goal. Jon Lundstrom, Principal, Science & Technology Studio for Lionakis discussed this project and other sustainability initiatives in the Q & A below.

Given Toyota’s Environmental Challenge 2050, How does TLS Long Beach help achieve that goal?

The six goals set out by Environmental Challenge (zero tailpipe emissions, zero carbon lifecycle for our vehicles, and zero carbon facilities by 2050; optimization and minimization of water use; support of recycled and circular economy; and enhancement of biodiversity) all have been used to guide the design, construction and operation of our TLS Long Beach site.

How did the decision to use Fuel Cell technology and it’s sustainable benefits on this project come about?

At Toyota, we endeavor to maintain a holistic, systems viewpoint as we address our business needs. Using this lens, we realized we could address the seemingly disparate needs of using renewable power to meet the needs of consolidating operations in a new building, providing hydrogen fuel for imported Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles (such as the Mirai), as well as providing fueling for the hydrogen fuel cell Heavy Duty Truck program (Portal) with an integrated system using TriGen fuel cell technology to simultaneously and renewably generate power, hydrogen fuel, and water which will reduce our impact on the municipal domestic water supply.

What has been your experience so far working with the project team to achieve LEED Gold?

For every project the challenge is keeping the team focused on conceptualizing and implementing sustainability opportunities. We do this by taking an additive rather than a deductive approach. This is done by starting with every possibility and narrowing selection by evaluating for applicability based on environmental, operational, as well as economic benefits before initialization of design. This process continues through design development and construction.

What do you see as the next big advancement in sustainable technology for Toyota?

On the product side, we continue with our diverse electrification strategy which includes Hybrid, Plug-in Hybrid, Fuel Cell Electric, and full Battery Electric drive trains. This diverse approach maximizes vehicle energy efficiency and carbon reduction from limited natural resources such as lithium and cobalt. Research and development is continuing in CASE or Connected, Autonomous, Sharing, Electrification.

On the support side, which includes the where (built environment) and the how (manufacturing and distribution processes), various renewable energy and hydrogen generation technologies, different renewable energy procurement strategies, and upcoming water capture and management technologies are being investigated and implemented.

Lionakis is a multi-discipline architecture firm providing design services for High Tech Manufacturing, Life Sciences, and Institutional Research and Development via their Science & Technology studio.

Enjoy the photo gallery below, which includes several drone views of the project as it has been progressing. Images courtesy of Oltmans Construction.