Selina Holmes
2 minute read

USGBC launches registration for LEED v4.1 for new, developing and existing cities and communities.

Today, our cities are at a crossroads. While the challenges our global cities face have never been more serious, the performance improvement opportunities available to those who invest in the right technologies have never been more promising. All over the world, city leaders are realizing the incredible opportunities that green buildings and green infrastructure present— and consequently, a new generation of high-performance cities is emerging.

Recognizing that cities need a globally consistent way to measure their performance, USGBC introduced the LEED for Cities and LEED for Communities programs in 2016 to help city leaders communicate performance across an array of objectives and to different types of stakeholders.

With the launch of LEED v4.1 for Cities and Communities, we have expanded on our earlier, performance-based approach from 2016 to deliver a comprehensive framework to support, planning, design, operation and performance management phases of new, developing and existing cities and communities.

Introducing LEED v4.1 for Cities and Communities

LEED v4.1 for Cities and LEED v4.1 for Communities help locations develop specific, responsible plans for natural systems, water, waste, transportation and many other factors that contribute to sustainability. They also go further and address quality of life, health, prosperity, equity, access, empowerment, safety and education. The rating systems support continuous progress on all these fronts in our communities and cities.

City leaders can achieve national energy and climate goals, and lead by example, by building high-performing, efficient cities and infrastructure, using private-sector tools like LEED to track progress. The result is that cities that have become engines of regional and national economic growth and prosperity, and the leaders among them are at the forefront of combating climate change. They are partners in this new and more expansive phase of our global efforts to create a better quality of life for all.

Although the challenges our cities face are many, we are determined to meet them head-on. We are fully committed to driving a new way forward for our cities, and we are joined by leaders across the globe who are ready to meet the challenge and deliver the communities and cities of tomorrow. Together, we are relentlessly building toward a future where everyone can thrive.

How it works

New and developing cities and communities can use LEED v4.1 for Cities and LEED v4.1 for Communities to plan, design and develop sustainable strategies across six LEED categories: Natural Systems and Ecology, Transportation and Land Use, Water Efficiency, Energy and Green House Gas Emissions, Materials and Resources, and Quality of Life.

To get started, follow the steps below and document the sustainable strategies implemented during the planning, design and development phase.

  1. Register in LEED Online. Learn more about registration and certification fees.
  2. Precertify (optional): Submit your project overview, goals, strategies and road map.
  3. Certify: Receive initial certification by documenting sustainable strategies during the planning, design and development phase.
  4. Recertify: Submit performance data and receive a score for ongoing certification.

Existing cities and communities can also use LEED v4.1 for Cities and LEED v4.1 for Communities to measure the performance of social, economic and environmental conditions at a citywide scale or at a community level.

To get started, follow the steps below and based on the strategies implemented and data entered across the six LEED credit categories, you will receive a score, which can lead to LEED certification.

  1. Register in LEED Online. Learn more about registration and certification fees.
  2. Precertify (optional): Submit your project overview, goals, strategies and road map.
  3. Certify: Receive initial certification by documenting sustainable strategies and submitting performance data.
  4. Recertify: Submit performance data and receive a score for ongoing certification.

If your city or community is not ready to pursue the full LEED certification, then start small, and track incremental progress towards sustainability goals. This is the power of a performance-centric approach, which fully supports continuous improvement.

Register a city or community