The U.S. Green Building Council’s new rating system for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design in neighborhood development, known as LEED-ND, is coming under fire for not putting a greater emphasis on affordable housing.
Critics say LEED-ND, in its current draft, discourages participating developers from alloting dollars into expensive energy-efficient affordable housing if their payback is, at most, four points out of a possible 106. They worry the point system, and any resulting developer disincentives, will get ingrained in municipal law books if local governments continue to adopt LEED standards at unprecedented rates — all at a time, they add, when the growing gap between wages and mortgages is creating an affordable housing crisis regionally and nationally.
In a recent study by Cambridge, Mass.-based New Ecology Inc., the cost of building green affordable housing held a nearly 3 percent premium, ranging up to 9 percent on some projects.
read more @ the SOURCE: Mlive.com – Critics say new green rating hurts affordable housing.
Ed: Although an interesting article however the article doesn’t mention the savings that low-income families will gain with lower energy bills.
More education of the public in relation to LEED is needed (eg initial construction cost vs long-term running costs and reduced environmental costs). Urban Planning also becomes more important including density of housing.
The team behind an environmentally sensitive parking lot at Gulley Park hopes it example for developers and builders, encouraging them to use stormwater management practices that protect water quality rather than harm it.
The city of Fayetteville partnered with the Uni- will be an versity of Arkansas Department of Landscape Architecture and the Arkansas Forestry Commission to build the 30-space parking lot with four bioswales located on the south and southwest sides of the lot and the center island.
Bioswales are designed to treat runoff water, trapping pollutants and silt, before the water flows into the watershed.
Read more @ the SOURCE: NWAnews.com :: Northwest Arkansas’ News.
Landscape architect Peter Rough spent a second day being cross-examined by individual appellants, who have strong concerns about the effects of wind turbines on the heritage landscape.
Otago Goldfields Heritage Trust immediate-past president Dr Mike Floate asked Mr Rough how it would be for someone that had read about the goldfields trail along Old Dunstan Rd, and wanted to experience some of it.
Mr Rough replied that it was difficult to answer because no one was exactly sure how the landscape was in the gold mining days.
read more @ the SOURCE: The Southland Times – (Landscape) Architect cross-examined over turbines’ impact on heritage route – Queenstown NZ .
The upcoming 2008 Olympic Games are inspiring some show-stopping buildings and technologies, among them the Greenpix Zero Energy Media Wall by New York based architecture & media firm Simone Giostra & Partners. Visible from up to a kilometer away on one of Beijing’s most congested main roads, the 20,000 square foot bright light facade of the Xicui entertainment complex is more than stunning, it’s surprisingly strong in its green credentials. The Greenpix Zero Energy Media Wall is the world’s largest color LED display, and has a self sustaining energy life-cycle. Harvesting sunlight collected during the day via photovoltaic solar cells, the wall uses stored solar energy to light up the LED’s for a spectacular nighttime show.
SOURCE: Inhabitat » GREENPIX Zero Energy Media Wall Lights up Beijing.
Premier Gordon Campbell will board a plane bound for South Korea this morning, leading an Asian trade mission comprising British Columbia’s largest-ever delegation of green businesses.
The group of about 30 clean technology and green design companies will be in Seoul and Suwon in South Korea until Wednesday, and then in Beijing until next Saturday.
“Virtually every Asian economy is looking for opportunities to find clean technology and green design,” Campbell said in an interview Friday.
“We have literally dozens and dozens of companies coming to say, ‘Here’s what we have to offer.’”
Campbell said while in Korea he plans to open B.C.’s first trade and investment office in Seoul and to meet Korean Prime Minister Han Seung-Soo.
“One of the things we’re trying to do is diversify our markets so we don’t have the kind of dependency we’ve had on American trade,” said Campbell.
SOURCE: Vancouver Sun – Premier leads delegation of green firms to Asia.