Howard County’s unique and voluntary Green Neighborhood Program provides allocations for the design and construction of homes meeting specific environmentally-focused criteria.
Howard County created a Green Neighborhood Checklist that provides a list of options to create a Green Neighborhood Site and Home. The checklist includes a variety of environmentally responsible criteria such as paths and trails, open space, environmental preservation, appropriate landscaping, water and energy efficiency and waste management.
A development project can qualify as a Green Neighborhood if it meets a required number of points on the checklist. These developments can use this certification in promotion and marketing their communities and may also qualify for fast track plan processing.
Please visit the Green Neighborhood page of the Department of Inspection, Licenses, and Permits for for more information about the Green Neighborhood Guidance Manual and the Green Neighborhood Checklist.
Howard County’s Department of Planning and Zoning also has a webpage that includes information about Green Neighborhoods including Green Neighborhood contact info and guidance documents found under Program Documents.
Pictured below are just a few of the methods that Howard County’s first Green Neighborhood, Locust Chapel, used to achieve Green Neighborhood status.
At left: The neighborhood’s pavilion satisfies the “Green Spaces and Amenity Areas” credit and features a green roof, picnic tables, and solar panels to power the pavilion’s ceiling fans and lights. What water is not absorbed by the green roof is captured by rain barrels which can be used for watering landscaping or the community garden pictured below.
At right: The nature path helps connect areas of the neighborhood with a natural surface walking trail. The trail earned Locust Chapel points for the “Pedestrian System” credit.
Through these and many other integrated measures, Locust Chapel is reducing stormwater runoff, conserving water and energy, and promoting sustainable practices like growing food. All while encouraging green and neighborly interactions between residents and their surroundings.