There has been a lot of news out of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) in the last few weeks, including the draft version of the new LEED standard. But an alliance between the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and USGBC will help bring green building even further into the mainstream.
The AIA has been supportive of green building for many years, primarily through its Committee on the Environment (COTE) which features the annual COTE Top Ten Green Buildings recognizing some of the best green building design in the country, and the Architecture 2030 coalition. And, earlier this year, a new initiative from the AIA called “Walk the Walk” has further promoted the involvement of architects in promoting sustainability.
So, it seems a natural evolution (though surprising that it has taken so long) that the AIA and USGBC have announced an agreement to develop a strategic alliance for “advancing the two organizations’ shared goals and complementing existing collaborative activities that include continuing education, research, and the AIA-coordinated 2030 coalition.”
While the US Green Building Council (USGBC) has been in existence since 1993, there has never been any direct connection between the two organizations, despite their parallel interests. The synergy that will come from the two most significant players in the field of green buildings should help further move sustainable, environmentally friendly design away from being a specialty and towards being the standard of good design.