Buildings & Neighborhoods
In the City of Long Beach, where the majority of our land is developed, there are a handful of strategies that help make our buildings and neighborhoods more sustainable. Walkable neighborhoods, green buildings, access to parks, open space and transit options all help create neighborhoods that are organized and built in a way that incorporates a mix of businesses and amenities, multiple transportation options and places to recreate all within walking distance of your front door.
Walkable neighborhoods are a key component of sustainability in Long Beach, offering several health, environmental and community benefits. Walkable neighborhoods locate housing near grocery and retail stores, schools, libraries, parks and other local amenities within an easy and safe walk. The City of Long Beach is ranked the 8th most walkable city in the United States.
Buildings are also a large component of creating a sustainable city. Did you know that in California, commercial buildings use 36% of the state’s electricity and construction and demolition materials like wood, concrete, brick and carpet account for almost 22% of the waste stream going to landfills? Green buildings are the solution, having shown an average savings of 50-90% decrease in waste cost savings, 30-50% decrease in water use savings and a 30% decrease in energy savings. Green building along with recycling or reusing construction waste can prolong our supply of natural resources, divert waste from the landfill and potentially saving money, all of which the City wants to encourage.
Encouraging green buildings and construction/demolition recycling is an opportunity to better use our resources while creating buildings that improve human health, build a better environment, and provide cost savings. Long Beach has adopted a Green Building Policy for city buildings and is working to create a Green Building Policy for private development in the City. The City of Long Beach also has implemented a Construction and Demolition Recycling program that requires certain demolition and/or construction projects to divert at least 60% of waste from landfills through recycling, salvage or deconstruction.