Natural Home just published a top 10 list of its favorite eco-friendly, energy-efficient communities in the nation.  If there’s anything to note, it may be that the Pacific Northwest is ahead of the game when it comes to green planning and thoughtful communities.  Here’s a quick look at each of the 10 communities; make sure to check out the original article – America’s Top 10 Best Green-Built Neighborhoods – for more information.

1.  Mueller (Austin, Texas): a 700-acre, LEED-NC Silver, mixed-use community, which is also home to this Sunflower electric garden.


2.  Madison Street (Chattanooga, Tennessee): this artist community is home to the city's earliest LEED-certified modern homes.  


3.  Northwest Crossing (Bend, Oregon): the 486-acre mixed-use community is xeriscaped, planned, and all buildings and homes are green building certified.


4.  Pine Ridge (Ketchum, Idaho): an eco-friendly master-planned community with market rate and affordable housing options. 


5.  Prairie Crossing (Grayslake, Illinois): a 359-unit, LEED Neighborhood Development with extensive green technology and an organic commercial farm. 


6.  Issaquah Highlands (Issaquah, Washington): green community with +3,000 homes built to local green building standards and situated near parks, recreational areas, and preserved forest land.


7.  Mosier Creek (Mosier, Oregon): eco-friendly neighborhood with 22 homes and 12 apartments powered by solar thermal and photovoltaics.


8.  Kalahari Harlem (New York, New York): innovative green building with 250 affordable units, community gardens, and an on-site car sharing program.


9.  Garden Atriums of Poquoson (Poquoson, Virginia): low-water use community of net-zero energy homes with a fruit orchard, vegetable garden, and community composting.


10.  Pringle Creek (Salem, Oregon): mixed-use community with walkable neighborhoods, two restored greenhouses, and careful water planning and rainwater management.


Get the entire list and slide show of America's Top 10 Green-Built Neighborhoods from Natural Home or grab a copy of the May/June 2010 issue.