July 19, 2007
Natural capitalism is about planned development. It takes into account the SmartGrowth model that development can be good, when it is well planned. By creating vibrant street life and a strong sense of community, green partnerships are part of the equation to creating healthier, safer, and more livable neighborhoods. Together, community leaders, homebuilders, developers, and businesses can promote this new way of thinking by ensuring that trees are a component of well-planned development.
Natural Capitalism Resource List
Prescott Gaylord, Chief Management Officer, Baltimore Landmark Homes (Baltimore, MD)
Greg Levine, Program Director, Trees Atlanta (Atlanta, GA)
Baltimore Landmark Homes is a family of companies which all focus on green building strategies. Their construction firm, Baltimore Green Construction, specializes in environmentally sensitive residential and commercial construction, including LEED-certified projects. One of those projects is the silver LEED renovation of the Herring Run Watershed Association’s office (a former bakery). In addition, their development firm, Baltimore Landmark Homes, focuses on green building as a crucial strategy for reclaiming older neighborhoods (which, of course, have existing structures and infrastructure, and which don’t consume any more farms or forests). Even at their real estate brokerage, City Life Realty, a large number of their agents are certified “EcoBrokers,” trained to help buyers understand important issues like energy efficiency, indoor air quality, and the use of natural/recycled homebuilding materials.
The BeltLine is a 22-mile loop of historic railroad that encircles downtown and midtown Atlanta. The development concept for this loop is to increase greenspace, improve transit, enhance mobility, connect 45 neighborhoods, spur economic development, and foster livable communities. No small task, but a development project of this size in a major city is a unique opportunity. Trees Atlanta’s neighborhood arboreta concept fits this vision well, and, with support from homebuilders, Trees Atlanta is working to extend the concept to communities along the BeltLine.
Brown Bag attendees will learn:
* Challenges and concerns faced by developers
* How developers integrate green values into business practices
* Why going green “is the right thing to do” from a developer’s perspective
* Selling urban forestry as a major business opportunity
* Approaching potential partners
About the Brown Bag Lunch Series
The Brown Bag Lunch Series is a monthly webcast held at the lunch hour and made possible through support from The Home Depot Foundation and USDA Forest Service. The overall goal is to create informal training opportunities for local urban and community forestry organizations. The series is geared to mainly serve the needs of volunteer organizations and community groups. While the webcasts are open to all, the content is most likely to be of interest to practitioners who work directly with the public, volunteers, or youth.
The trainings leverage local successes by amplifying to a larger audience the model organizations’ methods, materials, and approaches. Sessions are planned to last no more than one hour, with two presenters speaking on the same topic from slightly different perspectives, each for 10-15 minutes, followed by 10-15 minutes of questions and answers.