Location & Linkages (LEED LL Category)

Location & Linkages addresses the home’s access to things like already-existing utility services, public transporation, and neighborhood services (like grocery stores, dry-cleaners, churches, etc).  The less you’re having to bring in brand new water or electric lines to the area, the less energy and materials your house construction will use – and the smaller the negative impact to the environment.  The closer you are to neighborhood services and public transporation, the less likely you’ll be using your car to drive long distances to reach them.  So therefore, it’s easier to build green in existing neighborhoods than in brand new ones (although there are points for developers who are building new neighborhoods that are LEED compliant).

Honestly, we lucked into our LL category points because we chose the house and location long before we ever heard of LEED.   We in all likelihood wouldn’t have sold this house and moved elsewhere just to gain a few more LEED points.  We love our neighborhood – although we could use a few less McMansions (so two words to sellers and real estate brokers and developers:  Stop it!).

Because our neighborhood, Shorecrest Estates (which is bordered by Lovers Lane, Lemmon Avenue, NW Hiway, and Midway Road – – we’re on the cheaper, west side of Midway!), was established in the 1950’s, we obviously are building on a previously developed site, and we already have all utility services available.   And while the Retail developments at both Midway & NW Hiway and Lemmon & NW Hiway are over 1/4 of a mile from us, we do have multiple DART bus stops up and down Lemmon and Midway that allow us to get the maximum 3 points for “Outstanding Community Resources/Transit”. 

One question we never got resolved – but doesn’t matter to us because we qualified for the maximum points in this category already – was whether you’re supposed to measure distance as you would walk it, or as the crow flies.  Our bus stops qualified measuring as you would walk the distance, but our community resources didn’t.  It seems that these distances should be measured as you would walk since the idea is that the services need to be close enough to make you want to walk versus drive.

Proximity to established green spaces counts, and we’re very lucky to be located about 1/4 mile away from both the Bachman Creek Greenbelt and Field-Frazier Park.  These are both very basic but very nice green spaces.

Expected Location & Linkages points:  10 out of a possible 10.