Hoyt Street Properties Accepted to Participate in Pilot LEED for Neighborhood Development Program
Pearl District Developer Aims to Certify the Portland Urban Renewal Zone
Hoyt Street Properties, the largest developer in Portland’s Pearl District, has been accepted to participate in U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Neighborhood Development program, a pioneering rating system that extends the possibility of LEED certification from individual buildings to entire neighborhoods. In its pilot phase, the program is intended to become the first national standard for green neighborhood design. Hoyt Street Properties submitted its urban renewal project in the Pearl District for consideration by the U.S. Green Building Council in April, detailing how sustainable development practices helped to realize one of the most efficient, progressive, and renowned neighborhoods in the United States. The developer was notified of acceptance this week.
“We are excited to participate in the LEED for Neighborhood Development pilot project, as we see strong parallels between our longtime approach to the Pearl District and the program’s ideals,” said Tiffany Sweitzer, President/CEO of Hoyt Street Properties. “Involvement in this groundbreaking process will complement our plans for the continuing development of the Pearl District,” Sweitzer added.
Similar to the LEED program for individual projects, the LEED for Neighborhood Development program is a rating system that integrates the principles of smart growth, new urbanism, and green building. After the program’s pilot phase, the council will introduce the system to its comprehensive suite of LEED assessment tools, used to promote sustainable design, construction, and operations of the built environment.
Hoyt Street Properties is the development company responsible for transforming a 34-acre retired rail yard in a worn Portland industrial zone into the thriving mixed-use Pearl District community. A prime example of successful urban renewal, the area integrates homes, businesses, retail shops, restaurants, galleries, and parks into a vibrant and efficient multiuse neighborhood. In addition to incorporating eco-friendly components and features throughout its buildings, Hoyt Street Properties has applied an equally green approach in creating a community where limited car usage is made possible. Residents and visitors in the area enjoy the convenience of transportation options such as a streetcar, buses, and carefully designed roads and sidewalks where pedestrian and bike-friendly living is accommodated and encouraged.
Internationally recognized as a working model of responsible urban renewal, the Pearl District and Hoyt Street Properties have hosted dozens of visits from city planners, developers, and urban renewal experts from around the world. Most recently, Hoyt Street Properties has been studied by an Arkansas-based development company, Moses Tucker Real Estate, which is modeling an $80 million, 500,000-square-foot community in Little Rock after Hoyt’s development in Portland’s Pearl District.
Hoyt Street Properties has also been recognized by the Sierra Club, America’s largest grassroots environmental organization. In a first-of-its-kind report entitled, “Building Better: America’s Best New Development Projects,” the Sierra Club named the Pearl District as one of the nation’s 12 most eco-friendly development areas, and commended Hoyt Street Properties for working with the Portland Development Commission in creating a pedestrian-friendly environment where walking, cycling, and streetcars are embraced as viable means of transportation.
Hoyt Street Properties’ commitment to sustainable urban renewal practices will be paramount as the company approaches the second phase of developing the 34-acre parcel of Pearl District land. With over 2,500 dwelling units constructed to date- including condos, live/work spaces, affordable housing, and rentals- plus two city parks and approximately 90,000 square feet of retail space, the company’s plans for the remaining 10 acres will be devoted to high-performance designs with low environmental impact. Teaming with Portland firm, BOORA, as an architectural partner, Hoyt Street Properties has been devising a comprehensive Master Plan, which addresses the future vision for the remainder of the industrial land.
“Our efforts in the Pearl District are but halfway completed,” Sweitzer said. “ We will continue to support the evolution of this special neighborhood architecturally, culturally, and by continuing to make green, responsible development a top priority,” she added. “We are proud to play a role in fostering what has become one of the nation’s most sustainable neighborhoods, and we will continue to exceed national standards in neighborhood design,” Sweitzer concluded.
The LEED for Neighborhood Development system is from the U.S. Green Building Council in collaboration with the Congress for the New Urbanism and the Natural Resources Defense Council. LEED certification provides independent, third-party verification that a development's location and design meet accepted high standards for environmentally responsible, sustainable, development.
Hoyt Street Properties is the largest development company in Portland’s Pearl District. The group is responsible for developing the Hoyt Yards community, the urban renewal zone at the heart of the Pearl District. Comprised of twelve distinctive projects, Hoyt Yards has become a vibrant multiuse neighborhood and a model for urban planners around the world.