Many architects feel that the civil engineer is the hardest one to get onboard with green buildings or that they contribute the least among the design team toward a LEED project. It shouldn’t be that way, civil engineers should be an enthusiastic and integrated contributor to the LEED process and the project is likely missing a lot of opportunities for true collaboration and integrated design. The credits that can benefit from the civil engineer’s input are: construction activity pollution prevention, site selection, development density and community connectivity,brownfield redevelopment,alternative transportation,site development,stormwater design,heat island fffect,light pollution reduction,water efficient landscaping,innovative wastewater technologies,optimize energy performance ,construction waste management, recycled content, regional materials,innovation in design,and regional priority.
Urban and peri-urban agriculture (UPA) is rapidly spreading around the world. The global adoption of urban farming is primarily being driven by the dire poverty of much of the world’s urban poor and is becoming an increasingly vital part of the world’s urban food supply. In rich developed cities around the world an urban farming movement is also taking root, partly because of environmental concerns and the adoption of a local food ethic, but also to help address the persistent hunger that still exists in urban areas in industrialized countries.
The Green (or Sustainable) Building: Part III – The Importance of Location, Orientation and Landscaping
For new projects where the building site is not already decided, an important green consideration is the selection of a location for the building that fits into the existing urban fabric, especially the existing mass transit network of the city. Prospective sites should also be selected based on how easily they can integrate into the existing electric, gas, water, and sewage utilities. Fitting into a city’s existing infrastructure so that a project has the smallest impact on the existing energy, water, sewage and road systems is the first point at which the green decision making process comes into play. In addition to siting a green building should be oriented and landscaped to make the most of its site ant to integrate into the urban fabric so that it organically fits into it and enhances its surroundings. Orientation and landscaping can have major impacts on a buildings water and energy efficiency as well as on its environmental impact.