Looks like Chicago city planners have big ideas for a 1140 acre swathe of land in South Chicago. The spot is former U.S. Steel land, and planners have been mulling development options for the spot since about 2000. Now, they'd like to submit a proposal for a green development with sustainable neighborhoods, green buildings, street cars, and bicycle paths, etc. Officially referred to as the "South Chicago LEED Neighborhood Development Initiative," the plan would be rated by the USGBC's LEED-ND pilot program and would unravel over roughly 20-30 years.
The Galleries at Turney, although completed back in mid-2007, have been getting some good press over the last year for good reason. First, they're ultra modern, super slick, and hard to miss. Second, the eight homes were the first to receive LEED-H certification in the entire state of Arizona. Third, all eight detached units, as of about December 2008, have sold out. They're gone, which means smartly designed, modern, somewhat luxurious homes can sell, even in a tough real estate market.
One of Chicago’s biggest names in landscaping now lays claim to one of the greenest locations in the city. Christy Webber Landscapes, along with the City of Chicago and GreenWorks, came together to develop an area in a struggling neighborhood. After decades of abuse as an auto impound, landfill, and iron-works, the polluted site had been declared a brownfield. Subsequently, in 2003 the City of Chicago proposed an initiative to reclaim the site, and a short three years later, the 12.5 acre piece of land was clean and fully operational. Called "Rancho Verde," in honor of the mostly Hispanic workforce that makes up the landscaping industry, the former brownfield is now the headquarters for Christy Webber Landscapes. Rancho Verde features a one-story office building, warehouse, and a shop-yard big enough to hold dozens of trucks that keep Chicago looking healthy all year round.