This Issue

2015 September-October

Sustainable Heritage

[vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left"][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_single_image image="16705" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_single_image image="20592" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="10"][vc_column_text] By Nancy E. Berry [/vc_column_text][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="50"][vc_video link="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n3ayMQHGG6k"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left" padding_top="25" padding_bottom="25"][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text] Appleton Farms preserves cultural and historical landscapes while practicing sustainability.   Walking down a pristine gravel road past the fields of grazing Jersey cows, meandering stone walls, and historic dairy barns, a pastoral landscape unfolds. Appleton Farms in Hamilton and Ipswich, Massachusetts, is one of the oldest and largest (with more than a thousand acres) continuously operating farms in the United States. Established in 1638 by a land grant to Samuel Appleton, the farm today preserves a bucolic landscape, agricultural traditions, and historic farm buildings that are disappearing in the eastern part of the state. The working farm is just one of 114 properties located on more than 25,000 acres across the state under the auspices of The Trustees of Reservations, a nonprofit organization in Massachusetts that not only preserves land and historic buildings but also works in ways to support the vitality and sustainability of the communities in which they exist. The Trustees was founded by landscape architect Charles Eliot in 1891. The properties are open to the public with a...

Read More

Food Factor

[vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left"][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_column_text] Food Factor [/vc_column_text][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_column_text] The University of the District of Columbia’s new business-incubator kitchen is instrumental to the success of its Urban Food Hub solution.   By Kiley Jacques[/vc_column_text][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_column_text]Located in the nation’s capital, the University of the District of Columbia’s (UDC) new business-incubator kitchen will soon be a highly visible model for changing the way people think about food security in urban areas. The result of a $280,000 award from the second annual Sustainable DC Innovation Challenge, the new kitchen—intended as a space for food and nutrition education as well as job-skills and entrepreneurship training—is projected to be fully operational in November 2015. As one component of a larger Urban Food Hub model, the kitchen will serve lower-income residents looking for a leasable space from which to launch their own businesses. William Hare, UDC’s Associate Dean of Land Grant Programs, lists the Food Hub’s four components: food production, which includes field crops, hydroponic systems, and aquaponic systems; food preparation, which he describes as “taking the product and adding value to it”; food distribution; and food waste management. All are integral to UDC’s holistic vision for a food-secure city. The ultimate goal being to...

Read More

Green State

[vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="center"][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_column_text] Green State [/vc_column_text][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_column_text] California green builders find new solutions to scaling LEED with green codes.   By Alison Gregor[/vc_column_text][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row css=".vc_custom_1443107067114{margin-top: 25px !important;}" row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left" padding_top="25"][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_single_image image="20655" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="10"][vc_column_text]Workshops held at the congregations spread the word about mitigating waste, growing vegetables in the church gardens, and carpooling. Top right photo: Kathy Arnold; Left and bottom right photos: Kari R. Frey, FREYtography[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row css=".vc_custom_1443189009446{margin-top: 25px !important;}" row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left" padding_top="15"][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text]Building codes in many areas of the country are becoming incrementally greener, with the state of California in the lead after the 2010 adoption of the nation’s first and only statewide mandatory green building code, called CALGreen. CALGreen is considered so eco-friendly that the LEED Steering Committee ruled this spring that a handful of their building measures are aligned enough with LEED credits for building professionals to use a streamlined documentation path for LEED certification. As of July, projects in California subject to the mandatory 2013 CALGreen requirements and registered under the 2009 or v4 versions of LEED BC+C or LEED ID+C can use the streamlined path for select credits and prerequisites. “The streamlining of paperwork has obvious benefits,” says Wes Sullens,...

Read More

Q&A with Pepper Smith

[vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left" padding_top="50"][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="20691" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_column_text] llustration by Melissa McGill [/vc_column_text][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="20"][vc_single_image image="20690" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_column_text css=".vc_custom_1443190217194{margin-top: 20px !important;}"]Pepper Smith joined Davis Energy Group in 2007, managing the residential sustainability consulting and programs group including LEED for Homes, Enterprise Communities, Green Point Rated, and other verification programs. Currently, she is the company’s director of sustainability. She is also the current chair of the GreenBuild Program Working Group and has sat on a number of national USGBC committees. Pepper also taught LERN online courses offered at colleges around the world and at UC Berkeley Extension in their Sustainable Building Certificate Program.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_column_text]Q.How did you get involved in LEED for Homes Provider program? I started working on LEED for Homes in 2005 as a production builder where we built one of the first LEED Homes in the country. When I came onboard with Davis Energy Group in 2007, they were already a LEED for Homes Provider (one of the original 12), and I manage that providership. Q.How are you educating homebuilders on the value of LEED? Every meeting we have with homebuilders, we discuss green building in general as we gauge where they are on the green building programs ladder. This...

Read More

Environmental Equality

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_single_image image="20507" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/4"][vc_single_image image="20505" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_column_text] Majora Carter President, MCG Consulting [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="3/4"][vc_column_text] [dropcaps type='normal' color='' background_color='' border_color='']N[/dropcaps]o matter how good you believe your product, your idea, your policy, or even how good you think your intentions are, it doesn’t matter if nobody is “buying” it. There are tried-and-true ways of getting people to buy things and “educating” folks is far down the list. Relationship building continues to be a leading strategy in the foreseeable future, so let’s work with it! Serving on the Board of USGBC for four years, I was able to see its good products, ideas, policies, and intentions firsthand. But I come from the South Bronx, and my consulting firm works in the “South Bronx” you find in every city around the world: “low status” communities where good intentions have come and gone for generations, producing less than expected results. People debate why that is: not enough money, spending on the wrong things, insufficient community education; and all of them are probably correct. Whatever success my company has achieved is based on principles used in nearly every successful commercial product launch: identifying and developing a market that demands what you...

Read More

Major Leap Forward in Green Financing

[vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left"][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_single_image image="17498" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_single_image image="20573" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="10"][vc_column_text] By Alexandra DeLuca [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left" padding_top="25"][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text] [caption id="attachment_20578" align="alignright" width="700"] Multifamily housing such as the Station House shown here are benefitting from Fannie Mae’s Green Initiative program.[/caption] Fannie Mae rewards sustainable buildings with lower interest rates.   The site of an old police station in Maplewood, New Jersey, has been transformed into a shining example of adaptive reuse and the real financial benefits of achieving a green building certification. Built on a once environmentally contaminated site, The Station House is a 50-unit, mid-rise, multifamily rental property that earned the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certification for its use of recycled materials, efficient water management, and green power. In April of this year, Prudential Real Estate Investors (PREI) acquired the Station House property using Fannie Mae’s new lower interest rate on loans for properties with green building certifications, including LEED, ENERGY STAR®, Enterprise’s Green Communities Criteria, and five others. Multifamily owners may receive a reduction in the all-in interest rate of 10 basis points (for example 4.0 percent to 3.9 percent) for refinance, acquisition, or on a supplemental loan...

Read More

Finish Line

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_single_image image="18094" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_single_image image="20513" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_column_text] By Kiley Jacques [/vc_column_text][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_column_text] Pending LEED Gold-certification, the Whitney Museum capitalizes on its new, unique location. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="2/3"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_single_image image="20516" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_column_text]Photography By Nic Lehoux[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left" padding_bottom="25"][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text] It was clear that the High Line was to be the major point of our attention and the Hudson River, of course. The project needed to relate to both,” says Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW) partner Elisabetta Trezzani, who was involved from the very beginning when New York City’s new Whitney Museum was but a concept being discussed at its former Madison Avenue location. The museum’s move downtown is a “return to its roots in the Village,” since at its opening in 1931, the Whitney stood on West 8th Street. Its second reincarnation, in 1954, saw it grow to 65,000 square feet on Madison Avenue and 75th Street. Ultimately, however, the Marcel Breuer-designed building could accommodate only 10 percent of the museum’s permanent collection, which led to yet another relocation. Now, situated at the southernmost entrance of the High Line, it is a strong visual and physical tie to the urban landscape. “One of the main points was...

Read More

Vibrant Community

[vc_row][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_single_image image="18059" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_single_image image="20540" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][vc_column_text] BY MARY GRAUERHOLZ [/vc_column_text][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_column_text] Raising the living standards in one Denver housing development. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_separator type="transparent" position="center" up="30"][vc_single_image image="20544" border_color="grey" img_link_target="_self" img_size="full"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row row_type="row" type="full_width" text_align="left" padding_top="25"][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text] For more than 50 years, the South Lincoln Homes development, operated by the Denver Housing Authority (DHA), had the lifeless look that was so rampant in mid-20th century public housing: nondescript low-slung red brick buildings with cookie-cutter windows and thin strips of parched-looking grass in front, intersected by concrete sidewalks. The units served a vital purpose—housing the city’s low-income residents. But the buildings did very little to inspire residents or anyone else who walked down the West 10th Avenue area. In those times, designing safe, healthy, beautiful community spaces was as absent from planners’ minds as renewable energy, low-water living, or sustainable architecture. Around 2010, the light switched on and everything changed. Today the drab buildings have been replaced by vibrant structures with eye-catching architecture and thoughtful lighting. The reconstructed development, with renewable energy systems and facilities that draw residents together in community, is winning awards for innovation and forward-thinking leadership, and earning LEED Gold and Platinum certifications. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/2"][vc_column_text css=".vc_custom_1443039359978{margin-bottom: 20px !important;}"] A community garden and...

Read More