Walker Wells and Gregg Woodruff
Instilling a positive, forward-looking perspective is a major challenge when working in disadvantage communities. But how is this achieved when so much is needed to overcome a long-standing narrative of neglect and victimhood in neighborhoods such as Watts?
During session A03: Watts ReImagined, attendees will hear how an undeserved area is slowly being brought back to life through the foundation of sustainable design.
According to session presenter Walker Wells, certified planner and LEED AP, a collaborative approach among local stakeholders and leading urban sustainability organizations are creating new energy in Watts, as a way to create positive energy and forward progress during the 50 year commemoration of the Watts Civil Rights Uprising.
Gregg Woodruff, Greenbuild Program Working Group member, believes this session is a must see at Greenbuild because “Underserved communities struggle to find catalyzing moments for revitalization. It is exciting to believe that sustainability, especially on a community scale, can offer that catalyzing impetus.”
Woodruff also believes that urban revitalization and redevelopment is very economically viable in already recovered neighborhoods. Underserved communities can potentially offer a source of significantly more sustainable redevelopment techniques if they can focus on these issues and leverage available economic tools available to them, such as grants, tax credits, or other mechanisms.
Even though tasks like these aren’t easy, the Watts project offers hope to many that it is possible for these communities to become healthy, resilient and sustainable in the future.
Vice President at Global Green
Green Neighborhoods Advisor at NRDC
Chief Operating Officer and Executive Director at Grant Housing and Economic Development Corp (GHEDC)
Green Urbanism Program Assistant at Global Green USA