March 11, 2021
Fast Forward to Green Development
Fast tracking is a valuable incentive that local governments can offer developers to achieve lower emissions in new developments. Local governments can give priority to processing development applications for developments that meet certain criteria. For example, some local governments have chosen to use established rating systems such as LEED or Built Green and others have created their own list of desired features.
Approaches to Fast Tracking
- Local governments already have the authority to establish administrative policies to fast track green or other development applications.
- Fast tracking green development is about removing barriers and encouraging sustainable development that contributes to reduced greenhouse gas emissions and creates healthier communities.
- Fast tracking includes streamlining approval processes and moving green development applications to the front of the approval line. Green development is a proposal that includes sustainable elements such as:
- Sites that take advantage of existing infrastructure and transit lines
- Buildings that conserve energy, water and building materials
- Sustainable site locations
- Lower energy and water consumption
- Lower waste production
- Increased focus on healthier communities and built environments.
- Local governments can fast track rezoning, development permit and subdivision applications for developments that meet their criteria. Existing local government policies include:
- Fast tracking re-zoning based on predetermined green criteria
- Prep-application developer/staff approval meetings
- Reduced fees for buildings that meet a green standard.
- Local governments can also fast track building permit applications for green buildings that meet their criteria.