We often hear the term sustainability tossed around, particularly during conversations about transportation and development. What does it really mean and how can we make sure it is achievable?
“Greenprint Denver is a pragmatic approach to determine City [sustainability] objectives that can be tracked, measured, refined and reported.”
Sustainability is creating and finding ways to keep an ecological balance, using our resources without depleting or destroying them. In terms of everyday actions, it means finding ways to limit our impact on our environment.
As part of the South Broadway, Arizona to Exposition and I-25 Interchange Project, we are finding practical ways to integrate into the design, implementation and construction, guidelines identified in Greenprint Denver. Greenprint Denver, introduced to the citizens of Denver in 2006, outlines seven key elements and broad-based goals to maintaining and improving our environment include:
- Energy: Reduce economic, social and environmental impacts of unnecessary energy use.
- Air and Emissions: Reduce green house gas emissions, prepare for the local effects of global climate change and prevent the public health impacts of poor air quality.
- Water: Conserve Denver’s drinking water resources and improve the water quality of streams and lakes to be safe for recreational use.
- Land: Protect, care for and enhance the quality of Denver’s landscapes.
- Transportation: Create a vibrant, livable urban center that is pedestrian friendly, supports mass transit and decreases reliance on cars.
- Waste: Reduce costs, consumption of raw materials, and energy use through thoughtful purchasing, waste reduction, and recycling of existing roadway materials.
- Community: Building a sustainable community together, today.
A sustainability matrix was developed to track the goals being pursued, the strategies for how they will be achieved, baseline conditions, responsibilities, the plan for implementation, cost implications and operations and maintenance considerations.
further identifies specific measurable and achievable goals that are part of the overall comprehensive vision for Denver’s future.