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Older Smaller Better

A Study of Historic Districts – Measuring how the character of buildings and blocks influences urban vitality.

The Allied Arts Board was recently briefed on the Older Smaller Better study by Preservation Green Lab’s, Michael Powe. As we walk through Historic Districts in Seattle, such as Pioneer Square and the Chinatown/International District, we are constantly reminded of the need to preserve and enhance the value of these assets.  This groundbreaking study, entitled Older, Smaller, Better, (opens PDF report in new tab) demonstrates the unique and valuable role that older, smaller buildings play in the development of sustainable cities.

Join us for our upcoming Beer & Culture event: The Future of Seattle’s URM Buildings September 17 at 6 PM at the Historic Panama Hotel, 605 1/2 S. Main Street in Japan Town, where we will discuss proposed retrofitting policies that would impact approximately 900 unreinforced masonry buildings throughout Seattle.  Preservation Green Lab’s Older, Smaller Better report will also be part of the discussion.

Launched in March of 2009, the Seattle-based Preservation Green Lab advances research that explores the value that older buildings bring to their communities, and pioneers policy solutions that make it easier to reuse and green older and historic buildings. The Green Lab seeks to minimize carbon impacts from the built environment through direct emissions reductions from building retrofits and reuse, and to conserve character-rich and human-scale communities that attract people to more sustainable, urban living patterns.


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