USGBC Partners with Bank of America on New Green Neighborhoods Grant Program

Washington, D.C.--A committee consisting of industry leaders will select 10 to 12 projects from the group of program applicants.

Washington, D.C.–Be it energy saving appliances or transit-oriented development projects, the economic and environmental advantages of going green are undeniable, and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and the Bank of America Charitable Foundation have come together to help facilitate the process in the affordable housing sector with the formation of the Affordable Green Neighborhoods Grant Program.

The program targets developers and associated public agencies hoping to achieve certification under LEED 2009 for Neighborhood Development (LEED-ND) for projects that incorporate affordable green housing elements into their neighborhood design. “Through the LEED program, USGBC has highlighted the financial benefits of green buildings, which are high-performing and energy and resource efficient–families have less of a burden with lower utility and maintenance costs, providing them with more financial opportunities,” Scot Horst, senior vice president of LEED, USGBC, says in a prepared statement.

A committee consisting of industry leaders will select 10 to 12 projects from the group of program applicants. Recipients will be awarded $20,000 in cash for project related green endeavors, but it’s not just about money; it’s also about education. In addition to the monetary element, the grant includes a complimentary LEED-ND reference guide; registration for a LEED-ND webinar and two LEED-ND workshops; USGBC membership at a discounted rate; and the waiving of registration and exam fees for a single employee to pursue the LEED Accredited Professional with Neighborhood Development specialty credential. “The ripple effect created by offsetting the costs of LEED for Neighborhood Development training and certification will help create more green affordable housing, while advancing the sustainability of entire neighborhoods,” Kerry Sullivan, president, Bank of America Charitable Foundation, notes.

USGBC and Bank of America are not wasting time in getting the Affordable Green Neighborhoods Grant Program off the ground. Applications for the program will be accepted until September 9, 2010 and the chosen recipients will be informed the following month. The grants will be distributed beginning in late fall of this year, continuing through early winter. Through the new Bank of America-funded program, USGBC’s Horst adds, “We can encourage more developers to consider green communities and green affordable homes through the LEED for Neighborhood Development program.”

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