Chipotle Mexican Grill
Project type: Commercial
Project size: 10400
Cost/sq ft: $0
Completion date: May 01, 2004

Project Goals

Project Description

Project Features


  • Re-use of existing urban commercial location.


  • Installed a recirculation system with a tankless water heater, which reduces the amount of time that it takes to heat the water from about 2 minutes to 10 seconds.

Energy & Atmosphere:

  • Tankless water heating system exceeds energy code by 20%.
  • HVAC system exceeds energy code by 15%.
  • Installed the highest efficiency equipment available from their manufacturer.
  • Original building awnings provide shade.

Materials & Resources:

  • Extensive waste minimization strategies, including separating salvageable materials during deconstruction. Exterior windows, storefront and doors were all re-used.
  • A recycling program implemented during construction diverted an estimated 100 cubic yards from the landfill.
  • The original tile floor was restored instead of replaced, which further reduced the amount of material send to the landfill by 30 cubic yards.
  • Low maintenance finishes including stainless steel, galvanized steel and corrugated metal, which are durable, have recycled content, and a long lifecycle.
  • Dedicated in-store recycling area.

Indoor Environmental Quality:

  • All cleaning supplies are non-toxic.
  • Insulated air conditioning unit reduces noise pollution.
  • Positive pressure indoors at 200 CFM to reduce infiltration.
  • Water-based sealant used to reduce VOC's.
  • All finishes (except wall paint) are done off site so that VOC levels are lower and less airborne when the materials are installed in the store.

Innovations or Other:

  • Cleaning supplies are automatically mixed and dispensed so no human error is possible.

Testing/General Results:

  • Not Available

Last Updated: 12/30/14
Project Team
Chipotle re-used an existing building and implemented a construction waste management plan, which diverted from the landfill a portion of the deconstruction and remodeling material.

The restaurant interior has durable, low maintenance finishes, including stainless steel and hard surface flooring. Water-based sealants are used to reduce VOCs; most finishes are applied off-site to reduce in-store off gassing.

This location uses high efficiency HVAC equipment and the exposed ductwork is located within the conditioned space, which further improves the overall energy efficiency.