Commercial property owners of Woodstock, IL will soon hear the quiet when their lawns are being maintained by Langton Group since the area is now the state’s first American Green Zone Alliance (AGZA) Certified Robotic Green Zone. Not only is this the first AGZA Certified Green Zone in the state of Illinois, but the first Certified Green Zone using robotic mowers.
AGZA is a California-based non-governmental organization whose charter is to help communities reduce noise and pollution using hand tools and electric-powered lawn and landscape equipment. The group works with non-profit partner Quiet Communities to establish, monitor, verify, and certify properties using more environmentally friendly solutions in lawn maintenance.
“From California to New York, people are recognizing the advantages of reducing the use of gas-powered lawn equipment,” said Dan Mabe, President of AGZA. “We at AGZA help educate citizens, business leaders, and policymakers on the benefits of battery-powered options, which can eliminate gas pollution, reduce noise 40% to 70% and generally improve the quality of life in our communities.”
In its first Certified Robotic Green Zone in the state of IL, AGZA is working with Langton Group, a full-service, 250-employee, landscape construction, maintenance, and snow removal company also located in Woodstock, IL. Langton Group, with the help of Automated Outdoor Solutions – another company owned by Joe Langton of Langton Group – is converting its current customer base to automatic daily mowing using Husqvarna Automower® and setting up eco contracts to perform property maintenance with battery equipment. Automated Outdoor Solutions is also helping create off-grid charging for the Automowers® and bringing landscapers together to help them see the future in lawn mowing while positively impacting climate change.
“We are proud to be reducing our carbon footprint and at the same time providing our customers with a better product, a lawn that is trimmed daily and never overgrown,” said Joe Langton, President and CEO of Langton Group. “We have always tried to be environmentally conscious in our operations and we’re excited to work with AGZA and utilize Husqvarna products to bring Certified Green Zones to Illinois.”
Enter AGZA and Husqvarna North America
After discovering Husqvarna Automower® in 2016, Langton studied the business model in Europe, where robotic mowers and battery equipment in commercial lawncare are ubiquitous, concluding slow adoption in the U.S. was due to lack of information and consumer education.
Meanwhile, AGZA, which had been working to help Californians and the rest of the U.S. improve their communities by teaming municipalities with companies providing alternative solutions to lawncare equipment, had been testing Husqvarna’s battery-powered commercial products and was looking into the Automower®.
“We visited Husqvarna North American Headquarters in Charlotte, NC to vet and understand the technology and Husqvarna’s dedication to providing safe, effective, and environmentally friendly solutions in the industry,” said Mabe. “And we tested the technology firsthand before publishing results regarding equipment performance, reliability, and longevity.”
AGZA reports have concluded the Husqvarna 40V battery-electric handheld tools had already proven themselves through AGZA Field Testing Certification (AFTC) holding up well at golf courses, municipalities, school districts, and private maintenance company’s workloads.
After learning about Langton’s interest in Husqvarna Automower® technology, AGZA partnered with the company to help identify properties, inventory fleets, and generate impact improvement reports to support the goal of Illinois’ first AGZA Certified Green Zones (ACGZ). The total acreage for the Illinois ACGZ is 29 acres.
AGZA and Quiet Communities are working with Langton Group as well as other communities and companies to conduct more Green Zone Certifications and generate impact improvement analysis continuing the progress made in Southern California and what has begun in Illinois.