Location and Transportation | U.S. Green Building Council
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LEED v4 Education Series
Location and Transportation

GBCI: 0920007179

The LEED v4 education suites make connecting with the v4 Location and Transportation (LT) credit category easier than ever. This offering highlights important updates as projects transition from the v2009 to v4 rating system and Then, take a deeper dive with the "Ask the Expert" live discussion sessions, providing direct access to practitioners and subject matter specialists. Finally, learn more about available tools and resources for ongoing use and how to access this material on USGBC.org
Eligible for 1 CE HOUR.
  • 1 CE

  • LEED Green Associate

Rating system: v4

Published on: February 04, 2016



Three ways to learn more about LEED v4 and locations and transportation
LEED v4 education suites will present a range of engagement opportunities in a number of formats to accommodate every learning style and schedule.

Explore courses.While the courses below are no longer free, they are still available. Increase your knowledge with these credit-by-credit reviews.

Ask the experts. The Ask the Expert live discussion sessions provide direct access to practitioners and subject matter specialists.

Please note: the dates for this webcast have passed. A recording of the webcast is available for viewing above. This recorded session is not registered for GBCI CE hours. Some of the top questions asked are below.

Download the full list of questions and answers.

What changes should project teams be aware of in LEED v4?

  • One major change is simply calling out location and transportation performance in its own credit category! This emphasizes that the first step towards environmental performance is selecting a good location. We are excited to see how this decision helps steer project team conversations in the same way as other credit categories in the past.
  • Many Location and Transportation (LT) credit category requirements will be familiar from past Sustainable Sites credits.
  • Like the rest of LEED v4, there is an emphasis on more advanced performance metrics - things like walking distance instead of straight line radius, trip counts instead of transit stops, absolute rather than relative parking requirements, and bicycle networks in addition to bicycle storage.
  • The category also borrows some new concepts that first appeared in the LEED for Neighborhood Development rating system. Walking distance, in particular is a significant change that we hope will be more predictive of how occupants use surrounding amenities.

How did you ensure that the requirements are appropriate for projects globally? What LT category changes are particularly relevant for non-U.S. projects?
LEED v4 includes a number of significant steps to support our users in over 150 countries: including metric units in all resources, referencing non-U.S. standards where possible, and allowing for local equivalents. This global approach is evident throughout the LT credit category. An example is seen in LT Credit Green Vehicles:

  • We reference an international standard for EVSE by the International Electrotechnical Commission.
  • We clarified how two-wheeled vehicles are counted in total parking capacity, which is particularly relevant in places like India where scooters are more common. More on that below.
  • We are continuing to identify alternatives to the ACEEE Green Book, which so far include IBAMA Nota Verde and INMETRO in Brazil, Miljobil in Sweden, and Euro 6 in Europe.
  • Additional research is continually being conducted through the LEED International Roundtable, a body of GBCs and LEED Professional Groups that work with USGBC to recommend alternative compliance paths, regional pilot credits, guidance and resources to ensure that LEED is applicable around the world.

What do you recommend for projects in small towns pursuing LT credits? Smaller towns typically do not have the transportation options or pedestrian amenities of larger cities, and tend to be more focused on car transportation.
The LT credit category encourages the selection of sites that encourage multimodalism while discouraging reliance on single occupancy vehicle travel alone. While a few credits may be more challenging for projects in small towns, many are not and achieving these credits can help projects support the intent of the LT credit category. Access to quality transit is an example of a challenging credit for projects in small towns, but it encompasses 5 out of 16 points in the LT credit category (5 out of 110 total possible points) and therefore would not prevent a project from achieving a high certification. Bike facilities, on the other hand, is a credit that could lend itself well to projects in smaller towns. Projects should push their communities to take advantage of features like slower streets and lower traffic volume to create environments that are conducive to biking, making the credit more applicable to local LEED projects.

Are private shuttles to a metro station still allowed in this credit?
Private shuttles with restricted access are no longer an acceptable approach to achieving this credit in LEED v4. The credit is intended to “encourage development in locations shown to have multimodal transportation choices or otherwise reduced motor vehicle use.” Shuttle service is often needed in areas where the built environment and land-use was not supportive of multimodal transportation and therefore often doesn’t align with the credit intent. An exception to the above guidance is transit service that is privately funded or operated but available to everyone, such as a downtown business district’s enhanced transit, campus bus line or similar service that is available to the public. Project teams have also successfully worked with their transit agency to expand public transit service to an area that was previously unserved, as demand for transit increases.

The public transportation servicing my office project does not operate on weekends. What’s the reason behind this requirement?
Reliable access to transportation alternatives is incredibly important in driving habit change. The credit is intended to support multimodalism and, in particular transit; making it a viable option for project occupants. Even for office projects, work does not always take place from 9-5 on Monday through Friday. The weekend trip counts ensure that the project may be reached by residents, workers and visitors throughout the entire week.

How should we proceed when the parking requirements do not meet the parking minimums required by local zoning?
Many communities are over-parked, meaning that local authorities require more parking than is necessary. This often creates an environment where too much land area is dedicating to parking that isn’t utilized beyond infrequent peak periods or induced demand for parking, where abundant free or subsidized parking becomes the expectation, creating more demand than is reasonable and encouraging travelers to forgo other alternative modes that would be viable. When parking requirements are too high, project teams should work with their local government to reduce thresholds for their project. Exceptions for blanket parking requirements can often be made for a specific project. Be ready to demonstrate why parking rates are too high for a given use, how shared parking strategies could help meet parking demand, how transit options close to the project could eliminate the need for excessive parking or similar justification for the requested reduced parking requirements.

Discover resources. Looking for more? Below is a list of resources. Check out these resources in the web-based reference guide located within the LEED Credit Library (subscription required)—click on the videos in the right-hand column of the page. Learn more about accessing the guide.


  1. Support project teams, decision makers and influencers looking to explore the LEED v4 LT credit category
  2. Learn more about the select technical differences from LEED 2009 to v4, pertaining to BD+C, ID+C and O+M.
  3. Access technical experts to help address your general questions about how best to implement credit requirements.
  4. Acquire insight on emerging technologies that are important within the credit category and develop a better understanding of the business case for pursuing LT credits.


This course is a part of the following series:
LEED v4 Education Series

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Created by

U.S. Green Building Council
Washington, DC
United States


  • 7
    Jason Hercules made 7 contributions in the last 6 months

Jason Hercules

Manager U.S. Green Building Council

Abena Darden

Project Director Thornton Tomasetti, Inc.
  • 1
    Jonathan Burgess made 1 contribution in the last 6 months
  • certification

Jonathan Burgess

Vice President The Spinnaker Group
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Other sessions included in that series:

LEED v4 Education Series
Federal Green Buildings Update

LEED v4 Education Series
Energy and Atmosphere

LEED v4 Education Series
Documentation tips for project teams

LEED v4 Education Series
Indoor Environmental Quality

LEED v4 Education Series
v4 Curriculum Webinar: Material Resources

LEED v4 Education Series
Location and Transportation

LEED v4 Education Series
Sustainable Sites

LEED v4 Education Series