A Proven Tool, A New Problem: Integrated Design Meets Multifamily Electrification

At the Building Performance Association’s 2022 National Home Performance Conference in Nashville, I’ll be running an interactive workshop: “A Proven Tool, A New Problem: Integrated Design Meets Multifamily Electrification.”

Season One Recap

Season one of the Green in Action podcast is a wrap! Wondering what you missed? Tune in for host Kimberly Vermeer’s recap of the first season of the show. Kim reflects on season one’s stories: making net zero work for residents and redefining sustainability in rural New York State, why the integrated design process is crucial to developing sustainable, equitable communities, an Enterprise Green Communities deep dive, Cambridge developers who did it all during a pandemic, a conversation with Dana Bourland about her new book, Gray to Green Communities: A Call to Action on the Climate Crisis, and housers in New Mexico tackling community displacement head-on.

Hear again from some of the voices telling the stories of green achievements on the pod: Bryan Dove, Gerardo Brambila, Guy Kempe, Ray Demers, Walker Wells, Krista Eggers, Michelle Apigian, Jane Carbone, Dana Bourland, and Daniel Slavin. Thank you for listening – we’re excited to share these vital stories with you!

For episode show notes, visit https://urbanhabitatinitiatives.com/podcast/season-one-recap/. Follow us on Twitter www.twitter.com/UHIPodcast

2021 Year in Review

Somehow, another year has flown by! With a hopeful start offered by vaccines and a change in the presidential administration, we looked forward to some relief from the COVID challenges of 2020 and chances to reconnect and move forward. And while the COVID story is not yet finished, 2021 did have many good moments.

Sustainable Homeownership: Transforming Communities

New Mexico, a national vacation destination, has a serious housing shortage: over half of the workforce in Santa Fe commutes from out of town. Additionally, the desert state’s frequent droughts and high solar power potential create a strong case for climate resilient development. How can green building address housing affordability, community stability, and climate? This episode of Green in Action follows Homewise, a Santa-Fe-based non-profit housing organization, and learns how it grew to meet these challenges in New Mexico. Host Kimberly Vermeer spoke with Daniel Slavin, the Senior Director of Real Estate Development, and Carl Davis, Construction Manager for the Community Development Department, about how this Community Development Financial Institution’s commitment to sustainability guided their approach. Tune in for the story of Homewise’s organizational transformation from focusing on mortgage financing and education to building community wealth through developing housing and commercial space – and all of it informed by Homewise’s commitment to sustainability and climate resilience. This episode includes a close look at Homewise’s project El Camino Crossing in Santa Fe, (a case study from Blueprint for Greening Affordable Housing, Revised Edition), its Ruppe B. Drugstore commercial development in Albuquerque, and its anti-displacement efforts. For episode show notes, visit https://urbanhabitatinitiatives.com/podcast/sustainable-homeownership-transforming-communities/. Follow us on Twitter www.twitter.com/UHIPodcast

Moving Beyond Green Buildings with Dana Bourland

In this episode of the Green in Action podcast, host Kimberly Vermeer speaks with Dana Bourland, Enterprise Community Partners alum, founder of the JPB Foundation Environment program, and fellow Island Press author. Kim and Dana get personal about their motivations to push for healthy and equitable housing and discuss what that looks like on a community scale. They dive into the lessons from Dana’s new book, Gray to Green Communities: A Call to Action on the Housing and Climate Crises. Listen in for a timely conversation about the fundamental shift in approach needed to address the housing and climate crises – from interdisciplinary thinking, bold national measures, to a strong commitment to racial and social equity. Learn more at the show notes on our website, urbanhabitatinitiatives.com

Not for the Birds: Deep Green at Finch

Join Host Kimberly Vermeer for the story of Finch, the largest new construction affordable housing development in Cambridge, MA in the last 40 years. This episode recounts how Jane Carbone (Director of Development, Homeowners Rehab) and Michelle Apigian (Associate Principal, Icon Architecture) reconciled the ambitious requirements of three leading certifications: Enterprise Green Communities, FitWel and Passive House US as they designed and built Finch. Through collaboration, the team was able to navigate the energy performance and tight building envelope required by Passive House, along with the openness and connectivity associated with FitWel. Not to mention – they built and opened Finch during the Coronavirus pandemic! This episode includes soundscapes from a tour of Finch and a jaunt at Fresh Pond Reservation, Cambridge’s water reservoir just across the street. For full episode show notes, visit www.urbanhabitatinitiatives.com/podcast-home/. Follow us on Twitter www.twitter.com/UHIPodcast

Greenbuild 2021: Taking Blueprint for Greening Affordable Housing to the Resilience Summit

2020 and 2021 brought issues of health, equity, and resilience into sharp focus for green building and sustainability practitioners. At the Greenbuild Conference and Expo virtual Resilience Summit next week, Urban Habitat Initiatives President Kimberly Vermeer will be discussing key findings from her book, Blueprint for Greening Affordable Housing, Revised Edition.