began with Ivan Neville, son of Aaron Neville,
tone at the Superdome
opening plenary with a dazzling jazz performance.
Superdome, which housed thousands of refugees
during hurricane Katrina, was a perfect
setting to tell the story of the renaissance
of New Orleans.
Mercedes Benz Superdome,
180MM restoration, the dome inspired the
first New Orleans Saints Super Bowl victory
and helped launch the city's rebirth.
year was titled Leadership Jazz.
Fedrizzi, the founder, cheerleader and
passionate guru of the USBGC, explained that
leadership, in our time, requires the
improvisation, multiple voices, and
collaboration found in Jazz music.
some great sounds, Greenbuild provided a
treasure trove of information and educational
experiences that was inspiring and long
It was interesting
for this observer to hear, a few weeks
earlier, NY architects’ hubris about how they
are rebuilding after hurricane Sandy in a more
sustainable and resilient way than New Orleans
did after Katrina.
planners and leaders from New Orleans, would
quickly dispel that notion.
rebuilding efforts are found everywhere
throughout this enchanting city.
rebuilding of homes in the ninth ward
spearheaded by none other than Brad Pitt,
expanding of the oldest streetcar system in
the US and putting the city on a ‘street diet’
adding over 89 miles of bike lanes.
The bike tour was one
of my highlights and although I didn’t explore
all 89 miles of new lanes, I was able to see these initiatives
We saw how some
builders, expert in the Passive House System
(a building and rating system similar to
can make a
building that is unbelievably high performing
energy efficient as a standard structure.
builders push the energy efficiency envelope
to a point where the building can
more energy than it uses.
truss attached to the exterior walls allows
for super insulating these ‘thermos’-like
One of the most
inspirational sessions told us about an
enthusiastic middle school science teacher who
single handedly created a new program that
integrates a STEM curriculum by creating
project based learning opportunities.
relate and build on the lessons being taught
in the general education classes.
have become more engaged and excited about
their history class when they grow papyrus and
make paper while learning about ancient Egypt.
students created a water cycle demonstration
project that turns ‘fish poop’, into
fertilizer for hydroponic plants while also
actually grows vegetables for sale and raises
money to pay for many of their engineering
There was a lot
more on Environmental Product Declarations
(EPD) which are the new nutritional labels for
manufacturers are realizing the importance of
being transparent regarding the environmental
and human health impacts of their products and
are delivering this information to the
Greenbuild New Orleans left this one traveler
enthused and exhausted exploring the wealth of
knowledge and successful examples of
sustainable strategies on display. USGBC
thankfully provided a ‘rejuvenation lounge’
complete with an oxygen bar (see inset photo).
No visit to New Orleans would be
complete without a tour of the WWII museum.
A ‘Higgins’ boat is on display which,
as ‘IKE’ is remarked to have said, won the war
for the Allies.
I can't wait until next
year when Greenbuild comes to our nations
capitol. Hope to see you then.
information about the firm go to
http://www.shilale.com. Contact Michael
Shilale directly by calling 845-708-9200.