New Orleans Is Home to Greenest Community

Stilts houses may be the wave of the future. (Photo: Matyas Rehak/Shutterstock)

At last week’s meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative in New York, U.S. Green Building Council CEO Rick Fedrizzi declared that the Make It Right New Orleans project is “the largest and greenest community of single-family homes in the world.” The project, launched by Brad Pitt, has 13 LEED Platinum certified single-family homes and plans to build 150 more LEED Platinum properties.

These homes are being built in the Lower 9th Ward, an area of New Orleans that was completely devastated when the levees broke after Hurricane Katrina stormed into the city.

“In transforming the Lower 9th Ward, Make It Right is showing us how we can transform those parts of our nation that have fallen behind the most, whether through neglect, poverty or disaster," Clinton said. "Make It Right offers a blueprint for how to build homes that instill pride and combine to form communities of hope and opportunity. By following the Make It Right model, we can generate the green collar jobs our economy needs to move forward and advance building practices that reduce carbon emissions, while at the same time growing neighborhoods where families can thrive.” Source: USGBC (PDF)

The Make it Right project is just part of the overall green rebuilding focus in the city. The Sierra Club has compiled a document that assesses all of the green building efforts in the city. The report, published just prior to the four-year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina’s landfall, is available online: New Orleans Green Building Assessment (PDF).