Industry News

Green Building Helped Save Cities in Louisiana Post Hurricane Katrina


January 14_Rebuilding After Hurricane Katrina_Image 1It’s been almost a decade since Hurricane Katrina flooded Louisiana, tore homes off their foundations, and left thousands fatally injured or homeless.

Just weeks after the storm, the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) met with New Orleans stakeholders and created “The New Orleans Principles,” containing guidelines on how to rebuild and create a more sustainable future.

“They are a great, succinct compilation of all of the best thinking about the way to build back sustainably and resiliency,” says Z. Smith, chairman of the board of directors for USGBC’s Louisiana chapter.

Before the storm, there was only one LEED certified building in all of Louisiana. Today, there are nearly a thousand. Sustainability proved to be particularly valuable in rebuilding low-income areas, since green building practices help lower the cost of home ownership.

January 14_Rebuilding After Hurricane Katrina_Image 2The city of Broadmoor rebuilt its elementary school transforming it into a LEED Gold building that features solar panels, rain gardens, a reflective white roof, and windows that facilitate natural light.

Make It Right, a nonprofit founded in 2007 by Brad Pitt, worked with a team of world-renowned architects with the goal of building 150 affordable LEED Platinum certified homes in the Lower Ninth Ward. Today, around 100 of the homes have been built and are currently occupied.

We are proud supporters of green initiatives that use progressive and innovative ideas. Our Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) zoning systems were recently selected as the winner in the Best Product for HVAC/Indoor Air Quality/Building Controls category of U.S. Green Building Council’s Best of Building Award. We are pleased to support important projects like the rebuilding of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. These initiatives help expand green building throughout the country, while providing people with better living and work spaces.

To read more about the importance of green building in the redevelopment process of Louisiana, click here.