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Retrofitting inner-city neighborhoods for energy efficiency

Kaid Benfield

Posted October 1, 2012

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  an energy specialist meets with a building manager (courtesy of Boston LISC)

I’m in Boston today, meeting with the Codman Square Neighborhood Development Corporation, Talbot Norfolk Triangle Neighbors United, the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), and other stakeholders to discuss sustainability planning for a community on the south side of the city.  It’s an exciting project, helping to bring environmental benefits to a low-income neighborhood.  I look forward to writing more about it soon.

I’ll definitely be meeting some of the people in this video, which describes a closely related program to bring energy efficiency and lower utility bills to residents of affordable housing in Boston.  In particular, the Boston LISC office has begun a green building retrofit initiative focusing on the city’s existing affordable housing stock and working with eleven neighborhood-based, nonprofit community development corporations.  More than 2,000 apartments have been retrofitted so far, each saving an average of 19 percent in energy costs.  The work is supported by the Barr Foundation.  Watch the people involved tell a great story:


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Kaid Benfield writes about community, development, and the environment on Switchboard and in the national media.  For more posts, see his blog's home page.  Please also visit NRDC’s sustainable communities video channels.

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit

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