In order to start moving toward living in reciprocity with the planet, we must consider our choices in where and how we choose to build this neighborhood. We are interested in principles of permaculture and utilizing current technologies to capture nature's renewable energy and resources to create closed loop systems. On a social level, sharing space and stuff naturally reduces consumption. Here is a short list of green values for the project:
A Connected Location.
A central or well-connected location would allow residents less car dependence and encourage more active, shared transportation. This reduces traffic and pollution within the city and expense for residents. The cost of owning and maintaining a car is a huge expense for many Bend residents and locating low and middle income residents on the edges of town or forcing them to commute from neighboring towns increases this expense.
Working with the Land.
When a piece of property is identified for the project, we will work to preserve the beauty of what it offers us. Maintaining trees, terrain and habitat will be an important part of our work.
Long-term Energy Solutions to Power the Neighborhood.
By design, the neighborhood will integrate long-term energy solutions into its infrastructure. Goals for the project include solutions that include, but are not limited to: solar integration, passive solar design of the homes and on-site water treatment and reuse.
Decreased Consumption through Sharing.
By its nature, community living encourages sharing of just about anything from material goods to space. Tools, garden plots, recreational gear, meals, cargo bikes, cars, instruments, the list goes on. This neighborhood sharing economy allows for less individual consumption by residents, benefitting pocketbooks and the planet.
The following programs provide guidelines for projects like this one to follow in building sustainable and/or regenerative communities:
Living Community Challenge
The Living Community Challenge is a program by the International Living Future Institute to help planners and developers rethink how they design their community-scale projects, and provide a compliance review process at the master planning stage and certification for fully built community or campus scale projects. Whether your project is a street, block, corridor, small or large neighborhood, or campus—it has a home in the Living Community Challenge.
One planet living
A vision of a world in which people enjoy happy, healthy lives within their fair share of the earth’s resources, leaving space for wildlife and wilderness. One Planet Living is an initiative to make truly sustainable living a reality using ecological footprinting and carbon footprinting as its headline indicators. It is based on ten guiding principles of sustainability as a framework.
Leed: neighborhood development
LEED for Neighborhood Development (LEED ND) was engineered to inspire and help create better, more sustainable, well-connected neighborhoods. It looks beyond the scale of buildings to consider entire communities.