Green, or sustainable, building is the practice of creating and using healthier and more resource-efficient models of construction, renovation, operation, maintenance and demolition.

 ball state graduate

“ecoREHAB has shown by example that there are means and methods for salvaging these homes and creating homes for people who need one. In my opinion recreating a functioning home and placing families back in them is a much more desired solution than demolition and vacancy.”

-David Vallandingham, Graduate Architect at Sullivan Goulette and Wilson Architects

The built environment has a vast impact on the natural environment, human health, and the economy. By adopting green building strategies, we can maximize both economic and environmental performance. Green construction methods can be integrated into buildings at any stage, from design and construction, to renovation and deconstruction. However, the most significant benefits can be obtained if the design and construction team takes an integrated approach from the earliest stages of a building project. Potential benefits of green building include:

Environmental

  • Enhance and protect biodiversity and ecosystems
  • Improve air and water quality
  • Reduce waste streams
  • Conserve and restore natural resources

Economic

  • Reduce operating costs
  • Create, expand, and shape markets for green product and services
  • Improve occupant productivity
  • Optimize life-cycle economic performance

Social

  • Enhance occupant comfort and health
  • Heighten aesthetic qualities
  • Minimize strain on local infrastructure
  • Improve overall quality of life

Green Building History in the United States

Some practices, such as using local and renewable materials or passive solar design, date back millennia – the Anasazi in the Southwest built entire villages so that all the homes received solar heat in the winter. The contemporary green building movement arose out of the need and desire for more energy-efficient and environmentally-friendly building practices. The oil price increases of the 1970s spurred significant research and activity to improve energy efficiency and find renewable energy sources. This, combined with the environmental movement of the 1960s and 1970s, led to the earliest experiments with contemporary green building. The green building field began to come together more formally in the 1990s. To read more, go to the EPA’s website.

 

It’s evolution in Muncie

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