Progress in the EcoVillage
As a result of extensive community discussions and planning , the Cleveland EcoVillage project is showing lots of progress.
W. 58th St. EcoVillage Townhomes: Completed in June 2004, the townhomes succeeded in demonstrating the green building potential in residential construction in Cleveland. They incorporate the best ecological design strategies available. The 20 town homes represent the best in residential green building, from alternative energy to high indoor environmental quality. It was a dedicated team of designers, consultants and developers that made this project a success. And, the lessons learned from this project go well beyond the individual homes to the many residents, professionals, and experts who learned more about green building and about ecovillage development through this project.
EcoVillage Community Garden: The EcoVillage community garden was established as a partnership between the El Barrio social service agency and St. Stephens Church, with funding from local businesses and a Cleveland CityWorks grant. The garden helped transform unsightly vacant lots on Ithaca Court into raised-bed gardens for local residents. The project also included the building of a strawbale toolshed. The Ohio State University Extension Service urban gardening program assisted the project.
- Planning for greenspace improvements at Zone Recreation Center: Greenspace enhancement and ecological restoration of the 22 acres that surround the Michael J. Zone Recreation Center. More than 200 neighborhood residents contributed to the creation of the Sustainable Greenspace Master Plan. The project was in partnership with the City of Cleveland and ParkWorks.
- West 65th St. Bridge: The new bridge was constructed with pedestrian enhancements, including gateway lighting, decoratice fencing, and street trees. The improvements were made in partnership with Ward 17 Councilman Matt Zone, the City of Cleveland, and the Ohio Department of Transportation.
Green Building Code Study: Local green building expert Jim LaRue was hired with funding from the George Gund Foundation to study Clevelands building codes and propose performance standards to encourage residential construction that is more energy efficient, less wasteful of materials, and that can employ other green building techniques. LaRue also advised EcoVillage residents on how to retrofit existing homes using environmentally preferred methods.
Green Single Family Homes:GreenBuilt, Ltd., a local green developer, built two prototype single-family homes, each designed to heat for less than $600 per year and incorporate other aspects of green design, as well be beautiful additions to the neighborhood.
- Solar School: The Foundation for Environmental Education, Key Bank, and Wire-Net donated a 1-kilowatt solar panel system to Gallagher Middle School, a Cleveland public school in the EcoVillage. The solar panel not only generates a small amount of electricity for the school but is used as an educational resource for the students and teachers.
New EcoVillage Rapid Station: The grand re-opening of the W. 65th & Madison RTA Rapid stop as the EcoVillage/W.65th Rapid station. This station was a result of a community planning process and incorporates green building principles.
- Asthma Prevention: In 2004-2005, The Greater Cleveland Asthma Coalition and the Cleveland EcoVillage will implement a pilot program in two EcoVillage elementary schools to reduce asthma in the schools.
- Energy Retrofit Study: An energy retrofit study in 2004-2005, in partnership with Building Science Corporation, will help residents determine the most cost effective ways to make energy efficiency improvements to their homes in the EcoVillage.
All this activity shows the possibilities that can be created with an effective partnership of a nonprofit community development organization like Detroit Shoreway and an environmental organization like EcoCity Cleveland. Its all about bringing together the skills to do development projects and the latest environmental thinking about building technology and urban design.
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3500 Lorain Avenue, Suite 301, Cleveland OH 44113
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Vacant lot comes alive: The EcoVillage project helped organize an urban garden for neighborhood residents.
Gallagher Middle School recently became the first Cleveland public school with a photovoltaic panel to generate electricity from sunlight. The 1-kilowatt solar electricity system fuels the energy needed for 10 100-watt light bulbs or 50 energy efficient bulbs. The saving of one kilowatt-hour of regular electricity keeps 1.6 lbs of carbon dioxide out of the air. The solar panel was made possible by the Million Solar Roofs Initiative of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), along with support from the Foundation for Environmental Education, Key Bank, WIRE-NET, Enterprise Social Investment Corporation (ESIC), and Ohio Department of Development Office of Energy Efficiency.