Connecticut Green Movement Gains Momentum

Connecticut Green Building Council chairman Todd Renz announced big green progress for the state.  Meeting with Thomas Ivers of the Milford CT. development task force, the two proudly endorsed the town’s adoption of a new green initiative.State legislation already requires the use of energy-efficient, environmentally friendly green building methods for most commercial projects.  Renz said that “any new school receiving $5 million or more in state bond funds or any addition or renovation getting more than $2.5 million from the state already have to meet these (LEED®) guidelines.”Milford has taken green building a few steps further.  The upscale community will formally release their green recommendations next month.  Ivers justified the town’s green commitment saying, “The Fairfield County towns are fairly progressive in this area (green), but if, like Milford, you are not in Fairfield County, you are ahead of the curve.  Towns that have not adopted this will be.  It is the way that everyone is going.”Milford is fashioning its green commitment along the lines of similar town ordinances enacted in Cook County, Illinois, Portland, Oregon, and Oakland California.  Under the plan’s guidelines, historic buildings would be exempted but all new construction exceeding 5,000 square feet would be required to comply with LEED® certifications.Other Connecticut localities to announce green building plans are Stamford, Madison, Cromwell and Bloomfield.  The Stamford Cool and Green by 2020 program requires Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) certifications for all private building beginning in 2011.  Reductions in building permit fees are extended to all qualifying projects.  The higher the LEED® rating, the bigger the building fee reduction.In Milford, the Good Shepherd Child Development Center opened in the fall of 2008.  The center is the first building in Milford to achieve LEED® certification.  In nearby Bridgeport, two new schools have added LEED® certification standards to their planning stages.  A national trend shows that the green building standard LEED® certification program and youth and educational centers make for healthy and happy work and play environments.

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