Green, or sustainable, building is the practice of creating and using healthier and more resource-efficient models of construction, renovation, operation, maintenance and demolition. This section contains articles about green buildings initiatives and research.
‘The Commons’ refers to resources that should be available to and accessible by all members of the community.
Place & Infrastructure
Focuses on how we use the space we inhabit—and how we can plan for ways to use it more sustainably.
Here we focus on rethinking the ways we live and the ways society and its systems are structured. It includes approaches, perspectives, and philosophies that can empower our pursuit of sustainability, getting more specific about the frameworks for thinking and action given in the Finding Solutions part of the Think Globally section, namely, the models of change available to help us understand the various aspects of the problem we are facing and to help us move towards sustainability.
The change paradigms are a varied lot. Some focus on specific objectives, some are holistic. Some are weighted toward “taking action” strategies, some toward conceptualization, some are rather balanced in dealing with both theory and practice. They all can find expression in local, regional, national and/or world-wide actions. They all can inspire us and help us find the way.
Please contact us about models for change that you would like to see added to this listing.
Community Land Trusts
Community land trusts are a way for a land owner or community group to preserve open space, prevent undesirable land uses, and/or provide affordable housing. Ownership of the land is often deeded to a nonprofit organization.
The Lehigh Valley has a wealth of historic buildings, structures, sites, and districts that add to the beauty and attractiveness of the region, increase understanding and appreciation of our heritage, and improve the quality of life. (Many significant historical features are also tourist attractions that add value to the local economy.)
by Colton Krial & Leah Triber During the first month of 2014, Oxfam released a report on the state of global inequality. The fact that quickly came to define the report spoke of the unprecedented level of wealth that a … more
There are many inter-related and interdependent factors that contribute to campus sustainability. This section looks at two ways to organize the different aspects of sustainability for campuses. The Sustainable Learning Community: One University’s Journey to the Future, outlines four interdependent … more
Use the comments feature on this page to add your thoughts on Education as it affects plans for a sustainable Lehigh Valley. Envision LV does not have a draft report on Education, although other components of the plan may cover … more
Community development is often bundled with economic development, but it is focused on the people and a sense of community, rather than the economic impacts of buildings & jobs and the like. Use the comments feature on this page to … more
by Al Wurth The Lehigh Valley, like so many other regions, is at a crossroads. In choosing which path to take in regional planning, our choice is between business-as-usual, 20th century approaches, a path often characterized as “New Jersification”, and … more
by Dennis R. Lieb “Without systemic change, sustainable communities are not possible.” This is the opening statement from a whitepaper by Ben Price, Projects Director for the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF). He is speaking here of our political … more
The Fall and Rise of Great Public Spaces Why we need parks, streetlife, squares, markets, trails, community gardens and other hang outs more than ever by Jay Walljasper, On the Commons, August 5, 2012 Opponents of Copenhagen’s first pedestrian street … more