SPDC and MSU Extension Launch Sustainable Built Environment Initiative

The Sustainable Built Environment Initiative (SBEI) was announced at the MSU Fall Extension Conference that took place Oct. 13, 2015, at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center in East Lansing.

December 17, 2015 - Author: Wayne Beyea

“After” concept drawing of what is possible for redevelopment of the Cadillac Heritage Plaza.

Contact: Wayne Beyea, beyea@msu.edu, 517-432-7600

East Lansing, Mich.--The Sustainable Built Environment Initiative (SBEI) was announced at the Michigan State University (MSU) Fall Extension Conference that took place Oct. 13, 2015, at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center in East Lansing.

The SBEI is an outreach effort of the School of Planning, Design and Construction (SPDC) at Michigan State University in partnership with MSU Extension. 

“The SBEI builds on the success of the former Small Town Design Initiative by providing an integrated approach to solving complex community problems using the planning, design and construction expertise of faculty and students within SPDC,” says Scott G. Witter, PhD, director of SPDC and interim director of the MSU Land Policy Institute. 

The initiative places emphasis on sustainable planning and design solutions for local issues, including green development, adaptive reuse, placemaking and resiliency planning.

Faculty from SPDC (Wayne R. Beyea, Warren J. Rauhe (emeritus) and Karen Russcher) presented at the Fall Extension Conference on the topic at the session titled, “Planning & Design for a Sustainable Built Environment: Examples & Case Studies from Michigan Communities.”   

The SBEI seeks projects that combine planning and design elements within a sustainability framework, including regeneration, renewable energy, and resiliency.

“Partnerships between local communities, engaged citizens, campus faculty and MSU Extension educators provide an innovative approach to solving complex sustainability issues addressed by the SBEI. We are pleased to be a part of this important initiative,” says, David Ivan, director of the MSU Extension Greening Michigan Institute, which provides oversight to a team of more than 65 Extension members throughout the state. 

Examples of projects could include downtown streetscapes, parks, bikeways and trails, open space systems, industrial/commercial reuse, beautification, land use, signs and neighborhood/residential mixed-use development. The scale of the project can vary from a single parcel to a subarea plan.  

“The process used for SBEI will involve developing a vision and plan, building consensus and creating physical images of sustainable design projects,” says, Wayne Beyea, Outreach Specialist and SBEI director within SPDC.

For more information about SBEI and the application process, visit: Sustainable Built Environment Initiative.

Tags: outreach


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