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Tony Keynotes at VERGE @ Greenbuild 2012

Last week in San Francisco, VERGE 2012 brought all sorts of technology and sustainability-focused professionals together to discuss the potential opportunities for technological advancements in energy, buildings and transportation.

Zappos’ very own CEO Tony Hsieh took center stage to deliver a stellar keynote address to hundreds of the professionals that attended the conference. His message was simple but packed full of inspiration: transform downtown Las Vegas into the “most community-focused large city in the world.” Tony highlighted the current efforts to bring technology, education, and small business development together in a way that creates “collisions, community and co-learning.”

Tony Hsieh, Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, VERGE 2012, VERGE 2012 Greenbuild, Downtown Las Vegas, Downtown Project, Tony Hsieh Downtown Project

Photo courtesy of Greenbiz.com

In Tony’s keynote address, there was also underlying messages of urban density, urban connectivity, and urban sustainability. By encouraging people, including Zappos employees, to move downtown, Tony hopes downtown Las Vegas will surpass 100 residents per acre: a population density that creates successful and sustainable cities. In Triumph of the City, a book that inspired Tony’s goal of revitalizing downtown Las Vegas, Edward Glaeser says, “The average suburban household consumes 27% more electricity than the average urban household.” The more residents that move and work downtown, the more our energy and resource consumption will decrease, as well as our carbon emissions from reduced car travel.  (Which the LEAF team couldn’t be more supportive of!)

In the fall of 2013, Zappos will move from the suburbs of Green Valley to the hustle and bustle of downtown Las Vegas. Modeled after NYU’s campus, our new home will blend with the surrounding neighborhoods and become part of the Las Vegas community.  We couldn’t be more excited for this new Zappos chapter!