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LEED v2009
Commercial Interiors
Sustainable Sites
Development Density and Community Connectivity

LEED CREDIT

CI-2009 SSc2: Development Density and Community Connectivity 6 points

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Credit achievement rate

XX%

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LEEDuser expert

Ellen Mitchell

HKS
Director of Sustainability

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Credit language

USGBC logo

© Copyright U.S. Green Building Council, Inc. All rights reserved.

Intent

To channel development to urban areas with existing infrastructure, protect greenfields and preserve habitat and natural resources.

Requirements

Option 1: Development density

Select space in a building that is located in an established, walkable community with a minimum density of 60,000 square feet per acre net (13,800 square meters per hectare net). The density calculation is based on a typical two-story downtown development and must include the area of the project being built.

OR

Option 2: Community connectivity

Select space in a building on a site that meets the following criteria:

  • Is located within 1/2-mile (800 meters) of a residential area or neighborhood with an average density of 10 units per acre net.
  • Is within 1/2-mile (800 meters) of at least 10 basic services.
  • Has pedestrian access between the building and the services.

For mixed-use projects, no more than 1 service within the project boundary may be counted as 1 of the 10 basic services, provided it is open to the public. No more than 2 of the 10 services required may be anticipated (i.e., at least 8 must be existing and operational). In addition, the anticipated services must be documented appropriately to demonstrate that they will be operational in the locations indicated within 1 year of occupation of the applicant’s project. Examples of basic services include the following:

  • Bank
  • Place of Worship
  • Convenience Grocery
  • Day Care Center
  • Cleaners
  • Fire Station
  • Beauty Salon
  • Hardware
  • Laundry
  • Library
  • Medical or Dental Office
  • Senior Care Facility
  • Park
  • Pharmacy
  • Post Office
  • Restaurant
  • School
  • Supermarket
  • Theater
  • Community Center
  • Fitness Center
  • Museum

Proximity is determined by drawing a 1/2-mile (800 meter) radius around a main building entrance on a site map and counting the services within that radius.

Greenfield developments and projects that do not use existing infrastructure are not eligible.

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What does it cost?

Cost estimates for this credit

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Frequently asked questions

Where do I draw the radius from?

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Is one building or residential area enough to satisfy the residential density requirement?

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My project has access to services that seem to be basic, but are not listed in the LEED Reference Guide—like insurance company, nail salon, auto repair shop. Will these count?

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My project is on a base or campus where some services are available to the population of the project, but not the general public. Do these count?

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For Option 2, does the residential neighborhood with average density of 10 units per net acre have to be existing, or can planned neighborhoods count towards earning this option?

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What site area should be used for an interiors project when figuring out the density radius? The building site area, or building footprint?

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Is my site previously developed?

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What exactly does LEED mean by residential neighborhood or area?

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Only a portion of my complying residential development lies within the ½-mile radius. Will this suffice for credit compliance?

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See all forum discussions about this credit »

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Documentation toolkit

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Credit achievement rate

XX%

Upgrade to LEEDuser Premium to see how many projects achieved this credit. Try it free »

LEEDuser expert

Ellen Mitchell

HKS
Director of Sustainability

Get the inside scoop

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USGBC logo

© Copyright U.S. Green Building Council, Inc. All rights reserved.

Intent

To channel development to urban areas with existing infrastructure, protect greenfields and preserve habitat and natural resources.

Requirements

Option 1: Development density

Select space in a building that is located in an established, walkable community with a minimum density of 60,000 square feet per acre net (13,800 square meters per hectare net). The density calculation is based on a typical two-story downtown development and must include the area of the project being built.

OR

Option 2: Community connectivity

Select space in a building on a site that meets the following criteria:

  • Is located within 1/2-mile (800 meters) of a residential area or neighborhood with an average density of 10 units per acre net.
  • Is within 1/2-mile (800 meters) of at least 10 basic services.
  • Has pedestrian access between the building and the services.

For mixed-use projects, no more than 1 service within the project boundary may be counted as 1 of the 10 basic services, provided it is open to the public. No more than 2 of the 10 services required may be anticipated (i.e., at least 8 must be existing and operational). In addition, the anticipated services must be documented appropriately to demonstrate that they will be operational in the locations indicated within 1 year of occupation of the applicant’s project. Examples of basic services include the following:

  • Bank
  • Place of Worship
  • Convenience Grocery
  • Day Care Center
  • Cleaners
  • Fire Station
  • Beauty Salon
  • Hardware
  • Laundry
  • Library
  • Medical or Dental Office
  • Senior Care Facility
  • Park
  • Pharmacy
  • Post Office
  • Restaurant
  • School
  • Supermarket
  • Theater
  • Community Center
  • Fitness Center
  • Museum

Proximity is determined by drawing a 1/2-mile (800 meter) radius around a main building entrance on a site map and counting the services within that radius.

Greenfield developments and projects that do not use existing infrastructure are not eligible.

XX%

Upgrade to LEEDuser Premium to see how many projects achieved this credit. Try it free »

Got the gist of SSc2 but not sure how to actually achieve it? LEEDuser gives step-by-step help. Premium members get:

  • Checklists covering all the key action steps you'll need to earn the credit.
  • Hot tips to give you shortcuts and avoid pitfalls.
  • Cost tips to assess what a credit will actually cost, and how to make it affordable.
  • Ideas for going beyond LEED with best practices.
  • All checklists organized by project phase.
  • On-the-fly suggestions of useful items from the Documentation Toolkit and Credit Language.

In the end, LEED is all about documentation. LEEDuser’s Documentation Toolkit, for premium members only, saves you time and helps you avoid mistakes with:

  • Calculators to help assess credit compliance.
  • Tracking spreadsheets for materials purchases.
  • Spreadsheets and forms to give to subs and other team members.
  • Guidance documents on arcane LEED issues.
  • Sample templates to help guide your narratives and LEED Online submissions.
  • Examples of actual submissions from certified LEED projects.

Where do I draw the radius from?

The answer to this question is available to LEEDuser premium members. Start a free trial »

(If you're already a premium member, log in here.)

Is one building or residential area enough to satisfy the residential density requirement?

The answer to this question is available to LEEDuser premium members. Start a free trial »

(If you're already a premium member, log in here.)

My project has access to services that seem to be basic, but are not listed in the LEED Reference Guide—like insurance company, nail salon, auto repair shop. Will these count?

The answer to this question is available to LEEDuser premium members. Start a free trial »

(If you're already a premium member, log in here.)

My project is on a base or campus where some services are available to the population of the project, but not the general public. Do these count?

The answer to this question is available to LEEDuser premium members. Start a free trial »

(If you're already a premium member, log in here.)

For Option 2, does the residential neighborhood with average density of 10 units per net acre have to be existing, or can planned neighborhoods count towards earning this option?

The answer to this question is available to LEEDuser premium members. Start a free trial »

(If you're already a premium member, log in here.)

What site area should be used for an interiors project when figuring out the density radius? The building site area, or building footprint?

The answer to this question is available to LEEDuser premium members. Start a free trial »

(If you're already a premium member, log in here.)

Is my site previously developed?

The answer to this question is available to LEEDuser premium members. Start a free trial »

(If you're already a premium member, log in here.)

What exactly does LEED mean by residential neighborhood or area?

The answer to this question is available to LEEDuser premium members. Start a free trial »

(If you're already a premium member, log in here.)

Only a portion of my complying residential development lies within the ½-mile radius. Will this suffice for credit compliance?

The answer to this question is available to LEEDuser premium members. Start a free trial »

(If you're already a premium member, log in here.)

LEEDuser expert

Ellen Mitchell

HKS
Director of Sustainability

See all LEEDuser forum discussions about this credit » Subscribe to new discussions about CI-2009 SSc2