The Seattle Chinatown International District is one of six US communities that will receive free sustainable neighborhood planning and design consultation in 2015-2016 from Global Green USA with the help of a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities Program.  Global Green will assemble a team of sustainability experts to conduct three-day visits to communities and provide comprehensive recommendations for infrastructure and policy changes aimed at helping the communities build a future that is more resource-efficient, livable, healthy, equitable, and environmentally responsible.

“We look forward to working with our partners, InterIm Community Development Association (InterIm CDA), the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, and the Seattle Department of Planning and Development, on this neighborhood-level assessment of the Seattle Chinatown International District,” said Maiko Winkler-Chin, Executive Director of the Seattle Chinatown International District Preservation and Development Authority (SCIDpda).  “This sustainable neighborhood planning consultation will ultimately help us to create long-term solutions that address displacement concerns within our community.  Furthermore, we are excited to learn about other immigrant communities in the US from the Global Green sustainability team, particularly San Francisco’s Chinatown and Los Angeles’ Little Tokyo.”

Starting in October, the Global Green sustainability team will visit each of the communities with other planning and sustainability experts from around the country— including Raimi+Associates, Farr Associates, the USGBC, and Agora Group.  During the site assessment, the team will identify a neighborhood’s positive qualities, consult with community stakeholders in meetings and public workshops, and identify major opportunities to improve the sustainability of each neighborhood.

At the conclusion of the visit, the team will present recommendations for both physical and policy changes that may include streetscape improvements, ecological restoration, integrated energy and water infrastructure, new standards for in-fill and transit-oriented development, or zoning code revisions to allow for urban agriculture or mixed-use development.

The sustainability experts evaluating the communities will use the LEED for Neighborhood Development (LEED-ND) standard, a nationally recognized method for creating neighborhoods that are walkable, bikeable, resource-efficient, and equitable.  Benefits of LEED-ND neighborhoods can include lower municipal operations costs, reduced infrastructure costs, increased use of alternate transportation, improvements to public health, and environmental protection.  LEED-ND was developed by the US Green Building Council (USGBC), the Congress for the New Urbanism, and the Natural Resources Defense Council.

The assistance to the six communities is made possible by a grant to Global Green USA from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Sustainable Communities under their Building Blocks for Sustainable Communities Program.  Global Green received these competitively awarded grants to help protect the environment and improve overall quality of life for communities.

Contact:

Monica Lauw, SCIDpda, 206-838-8238 or monical@scidpda.org

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