Easy Green: Discover the Appeal of 'Ecovillages'

Easy Green: Discover the Appeal of 'Ecovillages'

“Ecovillages” — communities specializing in green living — are springing up in rural, urban and suburban areas around the world. While these communities are really varied, all of them aim to produce sustainable practices an integrated part of daily life for residents.

Whether it’s a new-urban development within a large city or a remote rural community complete with vegetable gardens and walking trails, these communities are usually designed to reduce energy consumption, lower the carbon footprint of their community and promote green clinics.

But beyond that, what they appear to be offering is a opportunity to get in touch with like-minded individuals and get to know the neighbors. Keep reading to learn more about what brings people to green communities and also how to connect with an ecovillage on your location.

Architecture & Community Design, Union Studio

Green appeal: Constructed ecodesign. When you move to a green community, or ecovillage, a major part of the appeal is in the fact that each one of the green design work has been done for you. Many communities use solar or wind power, rainwater harvesting and composting. Inside, houses in ecovillages may comprise other aspects of green design, from sustainable and recycled materials to passive heating and cooling.

Still under development at this writing, the Redberry modular solar houses (shown here) would make a fantastic choice for green housing within an ecovillage. By being partially assembled in a centralized offsite location, modular homes have the potential to greatly reduce waste during the building procedure.

Globus Builder

Green appeal: Common areas equivalent more fun, not as waste. Community features such as a common playground or swimming pool reduce the power and resources it would take to build and keep these conveniences in individual houses, while also providing an opportunity to get together with neighbors.

CNU LEED AP, Kenny Craft

Community Spotlight:South Main, Buena Vista, Colorado

This new-urban high-density community was designed around access to some prime kayaking spot, and it has brought residents who love a green, outdoorsy lifestyle.

Green appeal: Walkability. Instead of needing to hop in the car for each small outing, part of what’s so appealing about living in a well-designed ecovillage is the walkability factor. By placing the neighborhood within easy walking distance of daily needs like markets, shops and solutions — or by supplying a few of those things within the miniature area, community members may bypass the car (at least all time).

CNU LEED AP, Kenny Craft

Green appeal: Mixed-use space. The South Main neighborhood in Colorado has incorporated lots of live-work area, with residents living over their shop or working from a home-based office. Cutting the sail saves an unbelievable amount of pollution; and residents may benefit from the products and services supplied by other people in the community, further increasing the “walkability factor.”

Read more about this community

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Community Spotlight: Sandywoods Farm, Tiverton, Rhode Island

The Sandywoods community offers both single-family houses and cheap rental flats, widening the scope of that has access to the beautiful ecofriendly village.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Green appeal: Open area. Depending on how big the region, there may be a shared backyard, walking path, park or perhaps preserved wild space. Sandywoods Farm has housing areas at a higher density, giving priority to preserving open space and natural areas.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Green appeal: Locavore lifestyle. Whether sharing a rooftop garden at town or a large vegetable farm complete with hens and beehives, many ecovillages include support for growing and eating locally. The Sandywoods Farm backyard includes fruit trees, shared veggie gardens and a place just for kids.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Green appeal: Sense of community. More than being simply a selection of homes, ecovillages aim to cultivate a feeling of kinship and community among residents. At Sandywoods Farm, lots of the community parties — from art events to live music and just a produce market — take place within this graceful principal property.

Read more about Sandywoods Farm

DNM Architect

Community Spotlight: TCI Lane Ranch, Carbondale, Colorado

This Colorado community intends to create net zero energy, with a community solar farm, accessibility to mass transit, bicycle trails and a community garden.

Union Studio, Architecture & Community Design

Community Spotlight: San Juan Passage, Anacortes, Washington

A sustainable, walkable coastal neighborhood in Washington state, the San Juan Passage booked the best waterfront sites for neighborhood parks to be enjoyed by all, and landscaping efforts focus on preserving native wildlife and plant habitats.

Want to come across an ecofriendly community in your area? Check these tools for community listings in which you live:The Communities Directory of Ecovillages
International Ecovillage Network

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