The green build wave is rising, and right now general contractors have the opportunity to ride its crest. It is fast becoming expected that professionals in the building trades are ready, willing and able to work green — and that means understanding the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED standards (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design).
Contractor’s LEEDing Role
In the chain of events that leads up to LEED certification, general contractors have a special “watchdog” role. It is the general contractor’s responsibility to keep accurate records on all materials used that are required to meet LEED standards. Consequently, it is imperative that not only the general contractor but also sub-contractors understand LEED certification, its requirements and its growing importance in winning bids.
Once the SSI guidelines are published in spring 2009, general contractors, landscape architects, developers, builders, and maintenance crews who are prepared to take advantage of them stand to see interest in obtaining their services rising.
Read more @ the SOURCE: Texas Contractor – Going Green From The Ground Up – 6/16/2008 Author of the SOURCE article is Jo Ann Jarreau call (713) 682–5299
VANCOUVER–Even in this city of condos, The Beasley stands out. Not because of its height (33 storeys), the number of units (271) or its location (Yaletown). What makes it impossible to ignore is its name – The Beasley.
In this city, that can mean only one thing, Larry Beasley.
On the off chance you haven’t heard of Beasley, he is Vancouver’s former chief planner and creator of the famous “Vancouver model,” which for all its flaws, now defines this city.
The point is that in a world obsessed with starchitects and celebrity designers, Vancouver is one of few cities to have grasped that the important issue isn’t architecture, but planning. It’s not so much buildings as the space between them that differentiates one city from another, that makes one city attractive, another unappealing.
SOURCE: TheStar.com – Ideas – Want a new urban model? Go west.
A design proposal by 10 architecture students from the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts has won the 2008 JP Morgan Chase Community Development Competition.
Over the past several months, a class — led by Derek Hoeferlin, lecturer in architecture — has partnered with the Good Work Network, a nonprofit business incubator in New Orleans, to create redevelopment strategies for the Franz Building, a historic retail space at 2016 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd. in the Central City neighborhood of New Orleans.
Two graduate students from Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning also developed a corresponding business plan.
The first-place award of $25,000 will provide seed money for the Franz Building renovation, which is scheduled to begin later this year. When completed, the 6,800-square-foot structure will house storefront tenant spaces as well as a new headquarters, including offices and classrooms, for the Good Work Network. Last year, the group provided training and support services to more than 600 low-income and minority entrepreneurs.
SOURCE: Washington Univeristy Record: Architecture students win JP Morgan Chase Community Development Competition.
Burt Hill was honored this week with a Digie Award at a June 10th ceremony held at the Realcomm Conference in San Diego. The firm received a 2008 Digie Award for their innovative use of automation in architecture.
The Digie Awards take place annually at the Realcomm Conference, a conference that provides a place for real estate industry leaders to discuss, analyze and debate the latest technologies and innovation that impact the commercial and corporate real estate industry. The awards recognize the individuals, companies and solutions that demonstrate the most innovative use of technology and automation in the industry. Burt Hill often utilizes building information modeling (BIM) software programs such as Autodesk’s REVIT platform and IES<Virtual Environment> to ensure the highest quality and most efficient designs.
SOURCE: Burt Hill – Press Release
A new report from the Centre for Cities and Washington’s Brookings Institution has found that the USA has a lot to learn from Britain’s urban renaissance. But while British politicians and officials have always been keen to go on the hunt for policy ideas from the States, US politicians don’t always follow suit. US mayors – and the next US administration – should look more closely at British policy ideas, to help American cities compete in the future.
Smarter, Stronger Cities points to the following examples of UK innovations which could be exported Stateside:
Read more @ the SOURCE: Centre for Cities – New Centre for Cities Report: Big UK lessons for US cities.
Lack of transportation choices, long commutes and cheap electricity from coal-fired power plants have contributed to Tennessee’s four major cities being ranked in the Top 25 worst emitters of carbon dioxide.
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, one-third of U.S. CO2 emissions come from transportation uses. Because most people live far away from their work in a city where adequate transportation alternatives are not entirely in place, auto dependency is naturally contributing to Nashville’s CO2 issue.
What can be done about this? It is a complex issue, but the solution may be surprisingly simple.
The answer lies in better usage of land to create walkable, self-contained, sustainable environments.
Read more @ the SOURCE: The Tennessean – Creating a walkable environment is one solution .
Ottawa residents who want to protect neighbourhoods from over-scaled and ugly development must roll up their sleeves and get involved in the political and planning process, says a longtime Montreal urban activist.
“Do not think that it is the city-employed planners who are going to negotiate with the developers a development project in the public interest,” says Dimitri Roussopoulos, founder and CEO of Urban Ecology, a think-tank on sustainable urban development.
“A lot of what happens in neighbourhoods and cities is driven by very influential and powerful economic interests,” he told a public meeting on intensification at City Hall last week.
SOURCE: canada.com – Ottawa Citizen – Economics often drives city planning, expert warns.