When you want to build something which is environmentally friendly according to the U.S. Green Building Council, you have to consider a lot more than just the building itself, such as its layout and some of the technology attached to it. You also have to consider different materials and transport, among other things. But before any of that can get started, you have to think about location. Indeed, the USGBC looks at the location of a building site before work has even begun. In a city like Minneapolis, construction typically occurs on whatever land you might have available to you. In other words: You work with what you have. So on this inaugural post about green building techniques, we are going to go over how to find the ideal location for your eco-friendly home.
Reuse Some Old Land
One of the biggest and easiest things you can do to get some big points on the tough LEED certification criteria is simply using land which was previously developed and then left alone. This satisfies a requirement which gives points for reusing undeveloped land. Things like old railroad yards or even an abandoned warehouse will give you huge points in the Location and Transportation portion of the certification. Here in Minneapolis, where construction is always happening but sometimes never goes anywhere, you could find yourself a gold mine (theoretically, of course) by setting up a home or business where planning was simply dropped.
Protect the Habit
There is a lot more to selecting a prime location than just reusing land, however. The biggest reason why the USGBC looks at this segment carefully is so the surrounding natural habitat of the local flora and fauna can be effectively protected. According to the current version of LEED, there are several things to look out for under the category Sensitive Land Protection. Watery areas—and we know there are plenty of those in Minnesota—are the prime benefactors in this sense.
Build Outside of the Floodplain. This is probably common sense, but you want to build your home outside of the floodplain. Here in Minneapolis, construction can be delayed massively because of spring floods as the winter thaws out. But you want to build in a dry area for more than just insurance reasons. Thousands of species of amphibians, birds, and insects live in the floodplains of America where moisture is rich and there are many nutrients to be had. So by building outside of the floodplain, you get to preserve their livelihood as well as yours.
Count on Coty
There are plenty of other reasons why you should consider looking for a proper location for your home. Feel free to contact Coty Construction or check out our e-book for more information about the importance of picking the right site.