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Measuring Site-level Success in Brownfield Redevelopments: A Focus on Sustainability and Green Building

October 2007

G. Christopher Wedding, Douglas Crawford-Brown


The article argues that measurement of site-success per brownfield redevelopment, historically, does not utilize adequate tools to comprehensively evaluate. Their suggested evaluation method hinges upon four categories: environment-health, finance, livability, and social-economic. This evaluation was done with the creation of a Sustainable Brownfields Development (SBR), consistent with the framework of a multi-attribute decision method (MADM) and the analytical hierarchical process (AHP). Since no indicator framework of that magnitude existed at that time, the authors selected appropriate indicators that could reduce comprehensible data into workable number sets. These indicators included interviews with developers and leaders in national brownfield redevelopment, a review of significant literature, creating objective hierarchies, and the ability for indicators to serve more than just one of the aforementioned categories.

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Policy Implications

Experts rated the tool a 7.68 out of 10, evaluating that the SBR could be used in deciding initial site plans and building design. An example used in the study is the recent push for energy efficiency in economic development policies. SBR can aid in the recent climate of rising energy prices to narrow down where and who would best sustain a brownfield redevelopment.

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