Tours at Greenbuild

Greenbuild tours are one of Greenbuild's most popular and exciting features, providing the opportunity to explore green buildings ranging from historic sites to sustainable home models.Greenbuild tours help attendees learn outside the convention center walls and present the best of the New Orleans area’s sustainable buildings and neighborhoods.

Greenbuild 2014 Tours will be offered at the following times:

Full Day Tours:

Half Day Tours:

Monday Full Day Tours:

October 20, 2014 | 8:00 am - 4:00 pm

TM02: Follow the Mighty Mississippi to the Capital City

The story of the Mississippi River tells the story of the United States, and it undoubtedly tells the story of our region. Tour with us as we head upriver to Baton Rouge. Learn about the Mighty Mississippi's riverfront commerce, from plantation communities to present day manufacturing. Highlighted projects will include Houmas House Plantation and Gardens, the Main Library at Goodwood, Downtown Baton Rouge, and the Baton Rouge Coca‐Cola Bottling Company, the first worldwide Coca‐ Cola bottling facility to be certified LEED. Join us as we celebrate our capital city's commitment to sustainable living and how sustainable communities benefit from both public and private investment.

Monday Half Day Morning Tours:

October 20, 2014 | 8:00 am - 12:00 pm


TM01: Living with Water

Visit New Orleans’ oldest Drainage Pumping Station to learn how the Crescent City manages being surrounded by water, below sea-level, with increasingly heavy rainfall. Then learn what is happening at the grassroots level by local companies and organizations to implement Green Infrastructure throughout the city to relieve some of the stress on those drainage systems and to get the people of New Orleans involved and learn how to Live With Water.

Monday Half Day Afternoon Tours:

October 20, 2014 | 2:00 pm - 6:00 pm

TM03: Writing the Book on Green

New Orleans has an active fourteen‐branch library system that is heavily utilized and valued by underserved populations within the city. Hurricane Katrina interrupted this resource when branches were destroyed or rendered uninhabitable by the storm event. Join us as we proudly tour four new public libraries that thrive as community living rooms, providing gathering space and informational resources for their neighborhoods. Explore the importance of sustainable design in a library typology as our guide reviews place‐ and site‐specific design decisions in programming, planning, form, material selections, and building systems.

TM04: Making it Right in the Lower Ninth!

You've heard a lot about it! Visit the Lower Ninth Ward almost 10 years after it was devastated by the flooding of Hurricane Katrina and the Industrial Canal levee breach storm events. Following the attention received by Brad Pitt's pink house initiative, witness the rebuilding of the Lower Ninth Ward and Holy Cross neighborhoods, using sustainable home models from local and national design teams. Rebuilt homes incorporate innovative technologies, including SIP's, wireless lighting systems, advanced framing systems, no VOC paints, caulks or adhesives, and solar power systems. We’ll make a stop at the 2014 Greenbuild Legacy Project on our way to experience a wetlands preserve and explore the challenges and opportunities of living with water.

TM05: Riding the Green Wave

This walking tour of Tulane's Uptown Campus will include a range of projects highlighting the opportunities and challenges of sustainable development and operations in an institutional campus setting. All projects visited meet or exceed the University's minimum LEED Silver policy. Particular emphasis throughout the tour will be placed on educational opportunities in the areas of project design and construction, community involvement, and building management, for students, staff, AEC professionals, facilities management and even neighbors. Learn about the unique Tulane “Green Machine” concept that successful sustainability takes "buy in" from all stakeholders. Also, experience the Unified Green, a multi‐phase effort that exemplifies the ideas of pedestrian‐friendly communities.


TM06: Broadmoor - Better than Before!

Hard‐fought grassroots efforts following Hurricane Katrina brought back the struggling New Orleans neighborhood of Broadmoor. Today this community is a model for economic and community revitalization, with three out of four buildings fully tenanted, scheduled streetscape improvements, thriving retail business, and a model coworking space that houses socially‐ and environmentally conscious ventures. On top of it all, the neighborhood development is pursuing LEED certification. The tour will include the LEED certified Rosa F. Keller Library, an innovative combination of a historically significant former residence now used as a community center with a modern library that together function as one building. Visitors will also have the opportunity to tour a Broadmoor home and to experience the Andrew H. Wilson Charter School, a LEED Gold certified K‐8 school that also functions as a community space.

Friday Half Day Afternoon Tours:

October 24, 2014 | 2:00 pm - 6:00 pm

TF01: Fighting for a Sustainable Future!

Tour The National World War II Museum, New Orleans' #1 ranked attraction! Start with an insider's first look at the Campaigns of Courage Phase I Pavilion (scheduled to open November 2014) with a guided tour led by the Museum's Senior Vice President of Capital Programs. Explore green oriented design and innovations specific to a museum that houses over scaled objects. Once the scheduled tour concludes, visitors may continue on a self‐guided tour of the other museum buildings and galleries, eat at one of local chef John Besh's restaurants, or choose to view Tom Hanks' award-winning production, "Beyond All Boundaries". Please bring your reusable water bottle for this tour.

TF02: Rediscovering Central City

Take a tour through the Central City neighborhood of New Orleans and understand the important role of a building in its neighborhood. Whether it’s the construction of the only LEED Certified Affordable Housing complex in New Orleans, the renovation of a 113 year old building into a multi‐use community space, or the adaptive reuse of a historical home into a local restaurant with an interior design comprised of 100% salvaged materials, this tour will provide a much needed look into an area of the city experiencing revitalization of both historic buildings and urban infill to redevelop a neighborhood that has long been neglected. Please bring your reusable water bottle for this tour.

TF03: Live, Work, Play in Downtown New Orleans

This tour will showcase several green or LEED certified projects in the CBD (Central Business District). The team will explore development factors that influenced the resurgence of urban living in the CBD: real estate value, public transportation, walking distances, convenience of services and entertainment, etc. Highlighted projects include high‐density residential building, New Orleans' first LEED Certified high-rise building, an innovative entrepreneurship lab, and a local grocery store featuring a hydroponic garden. A range of sustainable strategies will be presented, including tax credit funding for renovation projects, opportunities and challenges of new construction on in‐fill sites, and the socioeconomic implication of these developments. Please bring your reusable water bottle for this tour.

TF04: The Port of New Orleans Plans for a Green Future

New Orleans is an important port city, yet for most of the public, very little is known about the Port's operations and global significance. The Port engages in several hundred million dollars in capital construction on an annual basis, and this is an opportunity to learn about the economic importance of the Port and how environmental initiatives, green design, and sustainable development are being incorporated into the Port's long‐term vision. Learn about how New Orleans reinvented the river front after Hurricane Katrina, 9 years ago. The experience will end with a tour of Mardi Gras World, an insider’s view of how Mardi Gras is made and how the floats are recycled. Tour includes a video on the history of Mardi Gras and background on the real traditions of Mardi Gras in New Orleans. In addition, explore how the space along the river was an adaptive reuse of an existing old wharf structure. You will have the opportunity to dress like a Mardi Gras float rider, enjoy a slice of the famous Mardi Gras king cake and see how the floats are designed and made… and even recycled!

TF05: Behind the Scenes: Recycling New Orleans

Whatever the pleasure ‐ movies, food, maybe reading ‐ many of New Orleans' businesses reside in structures that are not strangers to the city. Businesses may come and go but our buildings remain. See how New Orleans embraces the architecture we have and adapts spaces to accommodate all types of work. From a historic mansion on famous St. Charles Avenue that today is a city library to an original streetcar barn that is now a grocery store to a shrimp packaging plant that now turns out local brews, this tour showcases Adaptive Reuse and how waste is not the only thing recycled in New Orleans. Please bring your reusable water bottle for this tour.

TF06: Naturally Green: Urban Ecology and Urban Farming

Tree ecology and sustainable urban farming both have a rich history in New Orleans and contribute today to the environmental and economic sustainability of the city. Come along with us as we tour different sites that tell a story of the city through time as well as forward‐thinking efforts of community members, local businesses, and educational institutions that are re-imagining what the future of New Orleans will be. Learn about the history and life of the majestic Southern Live Oaks and other trees within City Park as well as the Grow Dat Youth Farm, which teach local youth how to farm and raise capital from selling what they grow. Visit also the Good Food farm, the Bayou Bienvenue wetlands triangle interpretive site, and Crescent Park. This tour will have a lively discussion about the "three pillars" of sustainability: that sustainability demands the reconciliation of environmental, social equity, and economic demands.

TF07: Making it Right in the Lower Ninth!

You've heard a lot about it! Visit the Lower Ninth Ward almost 10 years after it was devastated by the flooding of Hurricane Katrina and the Industrial Canal levee breach storm events. Following the attention received by Brad Pitt's pink house initiative, witness the rebuilding of the Lower Ninth Ward and Holy Cross neighborhoods, using sustainable home models from local and national design teams. Rebuilt homes incorporate innovative technologies, including SIP's, wireless lighting systems, advanced framing systems, no VOC paints, caulks or adhesives, and solar power systems. We’ll make a stop at the 2014 Greenbuild Legacy Project on our way to experience a wetlands preserve and explore the challenges and opportunities of living with water.

TF08: Leadership Jazz, Where it All Started

Join us as we gather at Jackson Square for an essential walking tour. It all began here nearly 300 years ago, when the French Quarter was founded by Jean Baptiste Bienville in 1718 on the great Mississippi River. Learn about the historic core of the city and our relationship with the River, including a discussion of the important role of the Landrieu family in riverfront redevelopment over the years. After this introduction, the tour will continue along our wall able streets. Learn how the architecture responds to climate and place, how numerous cultures contributed to the fabric of the neighborhood, and about the adaptive reuse of significant buildings along the way. Sensitive issues will be discussed, such as the recent challenges around getting curbside recycling bins in the French Quarter, a negotiation between both sustainable best management practices and preservation guidelines. The tour ends in one of our famous Cities of the Dead", where we will get a close‐up look at historically appropriate and inappropriate (and damaging) restoration methods of above‐ground mausoleums. At the conclusion of the tour, feel free to explore our unique neighborhoods at your own pace. Attendees please note: this tour includes substantial walking and cannot accommodate people with physical disabilities. Please bring your reusable water bottle for this tour.

Saturday Full Day Tours:

October 25, 2014 | 8:00 am - 4:00 pm


TS01: Cruising the Mississippi Gulf Coast

At odds with current anti‐LEED legislation on‐the‐books, there is a remarkable boom of green industry in the state of Mississippi. Mississippi currently has 115 LEED registered and 62 LEED certified projects, with notable ones in the education, military, and manufacturing sectors. Join us as we tour Keesler Air Force Base Housing, with 736 LEED Silver homes, and the Armed Forces Retirement Home, a LEED Gold facility and 7 day stay‐in‐place sustainable shelter. Visit Stennis Space Center where going green resulted in the construction of the 75,000 sf Emergency Ops Center which features various energy saving measures that translate to 337,866 kw hours of energy and a reduction of 240 tons of carbon dioxide per year. Heading back to New Orleans, visit the historic civic, shopping and commercial district of Waveland ‐ Multiuse Housing and Business Center, LEED Silver.


TS02: North of the Lake

The Crescent City mostly sits between the Mississippi River to the "south" and Lake Pontchartrain to the "north". This tour will take you outside of New Orleans to see how the dedication to sustainability has spread across the Lake to the Northshore communities. Tour the first LEED Gold commercial office building in Louisiana, a local brewery that transformed their manufacturing process in order to use solar power, a college campus committed to renewable energy, and the suburban farmstead of one of Louisiana's most successful chefs, who is dedicated to serving local, farm‐to‐table ingredients.


TS03: From Devastation to Restoration

Ride with us as we drive beyond New Orleans to the Gulf Coast and beachfront communities of Mississippi, an area devasted by the full wrath of Hurricane Katrina. One stop will be in Kiln, MS, where we will tour one of only two LEED Certified schools in the state and learn how the green schools movement is making footholds. We will also stop in lovely Bay St. Louis, MS, where rebuilding efforts have risen to the challenge of incorporating not just FEMA requirements but also sustainable and preservation approaches to restoring an historic American beachfront town. We will tour the Bay St. Louis Fire Station and the Longfellow Civic Center. Visitors will learn about a FEMA 361 shelter building and about how the story of our rebuilding cannot be told without examining the role of FEMA.Finally hop on a flat boat and tour the swamp. A living, breathing, sustainability project which is critical to the survival of the city of New Orleans and it's surrounding area.

Saturday Half Day Morning Tours:

October 25, 2014 | 8:00 am - 12:00 pm


TS04: Louisiana's Original Green

Experience and learn about the complex history and heritage of Louisiana through the lens of plantation architecture and original artifacts by touring Laura Plantation and Columbia House . Explore traditional sustainable construction methods of the past at Laura Plantation, a true creole enterprise and self‐contained, sustainable community. Witness the historical renovation of Columbia House, a creole cottage that has already been moved twice due to its relationship to the levee.

TS05: The Real New Orleans: Revitalization in the Upper Ninth

Experience this behind the scenes tour of the Upper Ninth Ward Neighborhood. Tour various approaches of renovated public building types along the St. Claude Avenue Corridor, Eighth Ward, and Upper Ninth Wards in post‐Katrina New Orleans. Tour the Colton School Renovation, NOCCA Forum Addition, and the Drew Elementary Renovation, projects that demonstrate unique sustainable approaches of repairing, restoring, and expanding existing school buildings back into use. Explore how to utilize historic tax credits while achieving sustainable methods of renovation and expansion, while. On route to these projects, we’ll stop and explore other building typologies, including the St Roch Market and Crescent Park to see how other public spaces and building typologies are developing within the community.

TS06: Big Easy Riding

Bike with us through the historic core of New Orleans and learn about the variety of alternative transportation options available to residents and visitors alike. Led by a local with a big picture understanding of New Orleans transit, the tour will stop at a recently completed transit hub and a two mile long bikeway along the spine of the city currently under construction. On route to these projects, participants will get to experience the streetcar system, bike infrastructure, dense and walkable mixed‐use and residential neighborhoods, a River ferry, and a recreational path along the Mississippi River. On our journey we will see numerous landmarks of notable neighborhoods, such as the French Quarter, Algiers and Marigny. This tour cannot accommodate people with physical disabilities. Please bring your reusable water bottle for this tour.

TS07: Green Makes Cents

This tour will highlight several large‐scale redevelopments in order to understand the opportunities and challenges they present for green development. Together with the sustainability aspects, the tour will focus on the financial possibilities for executing such large‐scale projects. We will start at the former St. Bernard public housing development, which today is named Columbia Park at the Bayou District. It is 52 acres of re‐envisioned high‐quality, mixed‐income housing (with public housing units, market rate units and tax credit affordable units). Each unit is within a certified LEED for Homes building. Moreover, through each phase of development, the design, ownership, and construction team challenged themselves and sought higher levels of LEED certification, so that the final senior housing building is certified LEED Platinum and proudly includes a solar array and organic gardens. The development continues to grow and has most recently integrated an early learning center into the heart of the community. Experience the Lafitte Projects, a development being created in part by Low‐Income Housing Tax Credit. The homes are being built in accordance with the Enterprise Green Communities Criteria, incorporating healthy and energy‐efficient building practices, materials and systems. The tour continues with a bus ride through the surrounding Gentilly neighborhood and the new emerging VA & LSU Hospital Corridor and a stop at the LSU academic medical center.

TS08: Green Schools as Tools

New Orleans made a bold and transformational commitment to rebuild all 80 schools in its Recovery School District Master Plan to LEED Silver minimum. Today 20 LEED‐certified or ‐registered schools are now open or under construction. On this tour you will visit three schools that have already achieved LEED Silver or better as well as a fourth school benefitting from green community contributions through the Louisiana Green Schools Challenge and named the USGBC Louisiana Green Showcase School.


TS09: A Bayou Runs Through It

Perhaps you have heard some comparing the waters and canals of New Orleans with Venice. On this tour, travel by as we tour the area of New Orleans affectionately known as Pontilly. Comprised of the two historic mid‐century "separate but equal" neighborhood developments of Gentilly Woods and Pontchartrain Park. Pontilly today represents a large area of single‐family homes devastated by the storm events of Hurricane Katrina but rebuilding together with resiliency and sustainability. Explore these neighborhoods by street and the London Avenue Canal and learn about Project Home Again. Next stop will be one of the Top 10 Historically Black Universities in the country to tour their 2 LEED certified buildings. On the way back to the convention center, experience the adaptive reuse of an old cotton warehouse into modern day distillery at The Old New Orleans Rum Distillery.

Anyone can attend a Greenbuild tour. You can even attend a tour at Greenbuild without attending the full Greenbuild conference. Just register for Greenbuild and select additional offerings on the registration package page.

The Greenbuild Tours Program is developed by the Greenbuild 2014 Host Committee, USGBC Louisiana.