Not long ago, we interviewed Ryan Sakata, LEED Development Assistant for Sonoma Mountain Village (SMV), about this unique California mega-community, which incorporates both green building and green lifestyle factors. Mr. Sakata is no doubt rejoicing at the recent announcement that SMV has garnered Platinum designation in the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED for Neighborhood Development program.
The LEED for Neighborhood Development program was developed in collaboration with the Congress for New Urbanism and Natural Resources Defense Council to integrate the principles of smart growth, new urbanism and green building in the first national system for neighborhood design. SMV in many ways exemplifies these principles by developing jobs within walking distance of its homes through the Northbay’s Innovation Hub and Business Incubator, which currently houses 20 businesses.
One such business, Genesis Steel Frame Solutions, is part of the first “graduating class” of the incubator program, which subsidizes businesses during early stages of development with support from the state of California. The company, which has a solar-powered, zero-waste factory located on-site, will provide steel frames for the remaining build-out of SMV and plans to move offices to a larger space within the community soon.
The project has received additional awards, including the California Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Award for its efforts toward sustainability. In 2010, Sonoma Mountain Village also received top honors from the USGBC for LEED Commercial Interiors at Comcast’s reportedly on site zero-carbon operations center. This was one of only six in the state said to achieve this status.