A policy establishes a protocol or prototype into a publicly accessible domain, such as a code, standard, ordinance, or covenant, to expand its sphere of influence from a single project to standard practice accessible to all.

AIA Environmental Resource Guide

In 1991, Bob Berkebile asked The Center  to join the AIA’s Committee on the Environment.  Over a two-year tenure on the Committee, The Center became deeply involved in developing the framework for the Environmental Resource Guide (ERG), a groundbreaking effort to create a methodology to assess the environmental impact of building materials.  As Co-Chair of the ERG Committee, Pliny Fisk III was instrumental in establishing life cycle as the underlying framework for materials assessment.

Seaholm EcoDistrict

In 2012, the Seaholm District was selected as one of ten projects in North America to participate in EcoDistricts’1 Pilot Program. To further advance this work, the City of Austin’s Office of Sustainability contracted the Center to engage with diverse public, private, and non-profit sector stakeholders with an objective to identify quantitative and qualitative opportunities and benefits, articulate the project’s sustainability vision, goals, and process, develop an action agenda, and explore how emerging tools such as ecoBalance and Visible Green can add value to the EcoDistrict framework.

Green Guide for Health Care

The Center has been engaged in greening the healthcare sector since Gail Vittori wrote the influential paper Green and Healthy Buildings for the Health Care Industry.  The paper was presented at the 2001 Setting Healthcare’s Environmental Agenda conference in San Francisco—the health care industry’s first environmentally focused conference to specifically address green buildings, among other topics.  The paper also laid the groundwork from which the Green Guide for Health Care and other ecologically oriented health care specific initiatives have been derived.

Austin Green Builder Program

In the 1980’s, Austin had a nationally recognized market-based energy conservation program. A call to the Center from the City’s Environmental Conservation Services Department in 1989 opened the door for the Center to introduce the idea to expand the successful energy conservation program to other resource areas—water, materials, and waste—reflecting a life cycle, systems-based resource flow model developed by the Center.  The resulting public-private partnership between the Center and the City of Austin, funded by Public Technology Inc’s.

Green Urbanism at Mueller

The redevelopment of the 711-acre former Austin Mueller Municipal Airport began in earnest in the early 2000s, conceived as a master development with 10,000 residents and 10,000 jobs.  Sustainability was identified early on as one of Mueller’s six central tenets, along with fiscal responsibility, economic development, East Austin revitalization, compatibility with surrounding neighborhoods, and diversity.  CMPBS began our collaboration on the project in 2004 at the request of Mueller’s Master Developer Catellus Development Group.

Verano Sustainable Development

Verano is a planned community utilizing the SmartCode, LEED for New Development, and the Congress for New Urbanism’s approach to transects. As we looked at the lists of procedures, we realized that the very concept of life regenerating itself was not possible; the cycles were not there. We intervened by deciding to take what is required by the SmartCode and LEED into a cyclical rather than a linear list.

Dell Children's Medical Center of Central Texas

When Dell Children’s Medical Center broke ground on the Robert Mueller Development site in 2004, the Seton Family of Hospitals had a vision of creating a “green” hospital which would set new standards. Over the last several years, world-renowned medical professionals, architects, environmentalists and elected officials have toured Dell Children’s to learn what it takes to build and operate a LEED certified hospital.

Dell Children's is the first hospital in the world to achieve LEED® Platinum Certification.

Escarpment + Parkside Village

In 2002, the Center met with the principals of Austin-based Stratus Properties to establish green building protocols for a planned retail development in environmentally sensitive southwest Austin.  What began as an unexpected and rare expression of interest from the development community at the time has evolved into successive collaborations to establish meaningful and measurable accomplishments at a scale for which few visible examples exists in this region.

Laredo Demonstration Farm

The Laredo Demonstration “Blueprint” Farm was conceived as an integrated regional response to building, infrastructure, materials, and agriculture and as a foundation for local economic development.  Coordinated with the Texas Department of Agriculture’s Texas-Israel Exchange under the leadership of Texas Agriculture Commissioner Jim Hightower, the Farm challenged agricultural convention in Texas, where, as in many U.S.

Advanced Green Builder Demonstration Building

The Advanced Green Builder Demonstration Home Project introduces communities to a range of “green” housing materials and methods, emphasizing opportunities for recycled-content and by-product based construction materials. The project was supported by several state, regional, and municipal agencies and reflects a regional process as open to adaptation to a region’s natural resources as it is to its peoples.

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