BY ALESHIA HOWE
When it comes to sustainability, local experts say the perks of energy efficient commercial buildings still depend on the end user and projected population growth in Texas via immigration will determine the types of sustainable residential developments of the future. But any way you slice it, sustainable is the new way of life.
“There’s a difference in energy efficiency and sustainable building and warm and fuzzy terms like green and LEED,” said Bell Industry’s Donnie Herrin, one of several expert speakers at the April 30 Greater Fort Worth Real Estate Council’s Summit Series concentrating on sustainable building.The Summit Series was held at TCC’s Trinity River Campus in what planners hope to be the first in a series of summits to discuss sustainable building and development.
Jyl DeHaven, of Prism 3 Solutions LLC, said the purpose of the series is to help business owners and real estate and city planning professionals to learn to incorporate sustainable design into their own business models.“Historically it’s been ‘do good, make money,’” she said. “They’ve been hard to bring together. From the private sector perspective, we got good at doing good, writing a check at the end of the year. But we never saw the ability to do good and make money.”
Dale Fisseler, Fort Worth city manager, vowed to help grow sustainability in Cowtown.
“The city of Fort Worth wants to make it easier to do good and make money,” he said, adding that the city is “doing its part in terms getting our employees into those kinds of [sustainable] buildings.”
Herrin, one of the panelists at the event, said when it comes to sustainable commercial buildings, he tells builders to think of it as a long-term investment, similar to any stock market investment.
“Energy efficiency is nothing more than an investment opportunity,” Herrin said. “… You could roll the dice and put it on the stock market or you could look at energy efficiency, which is going to bring down your costs by 8 to 10 percent – it’s unequivocally, across-the-board better than any other investment you can make.”
But, any investments made in a more energy efficient building must be continually monitored, panelists said. Billy Ware, of Ware Architecture said buildings must be maintained so they can continue to perform at their best.
But one of the most important aspects of whether or not to incorporate energy saving techniques into a commercial building, panelists said, is whether or not the builder will be the end user. If a new commercial building (or a renovated one) will be occupied by the builder, then energy savings will be pocketed by that user. But for developers who are building to lease the building space, those energy savings will be realized by tenants in most cases, panelists said.
“If the owner doesn’t pay the electric bill, we can go in and do lighting upgrades, but it’s a challenge,” Herrin said. “About the only play you can make is there might be a cap rate incentive there, or you might be able to lure tenants to stay and renew if you can promote it … economically, it’s a tough decision if tenants pay the utility bill.”
DeHaven disagreed, saying there is plenty of benefit for a developer to build green, even if they won’t see energy cost savings.
DeHaven said some landlords are beginning to offer tenants a flat rate that includes energy costs in their rent.
“Most tenants that have gone through at least one lease have gotten burned at least once on a big, fat electric bill,” she said. “… and it truly does add value to the building. We have to get past this instant gratification place.”
Jonathan Shapiro, CEO and founder of the Texas Institute for Sustainable Technology Research and the event’s keynote speaker, said the residential market, however, has less divide when it comes to sustainable building.
“From forecasts I see, everyone is feeling a little more positive about residential kicking up,” Shapiro said, adding that demographics will play a key role in North Texas’ near future.
“There is a demographic shift,” he said. “If we were in Detroit, would we be optimistic? No. You wouldn’t even come to this meeting.”
Shapiro said Hispanic immigration into the United States – specifically into North Texas – will drive the population growth into 2021, which will mean demand for houses.
Shapiro reported the home purchasing capacity for the average Hispanic family in 2020 is expected to be $150,000 with 5 percent down. And if 1 percent of the households in 2010 buy a home, that will equal a $33 billion opportunity.
“The challenge is going to be understanding the design preferences of Hispanic home buyers,” he said. “Density is not a problem. We will need to create land uses and a regulatory climate to accommodate the Hispanic population growth rate in a more sustainable, high-density design.”
When they come home from Iraq and Afghanistan, our veterans may find themselves out of a job as well as out of uniform. Time to call Green Collar Vets.
The woman known as Fort Worth's Green Hornet and her sidekick sit in plush chairs inside a single-story brick building on Race Street, filling their spacious one-room office with talk and laughter. The ceiling is made of recycled tiles, the walls are covered in textured, earth-tone clay plaster rather than toxic paint, and on the front desk there's a carved wooden sign that reads "Green Is Sexy." During two years of weekly wine-er, brainstorming-sessions, these two well-dressed, 50-something businesswomen have plotted how to green up this conservative Texas town. Now they've set their sights on something bigger: a scheme to change the lives of U.S. veterans.
The Green Hornet, aka commercial real estate developer Jyl DeHaven, doesn't call herself an environmentalist. Yet she persuaded the city to designate a 10-square-block district encompassing her office as a mixed-use green "urban village." She also serves on the mayor's sustainable building committee. "Two to three years ago, I'm not sure the phrase ‘sustainable building' was in anyone's vocabulary," she says. "This is a very conservative town. We don't like trends."
In 2006, while advising the Tarrant County chapter of Habitat for Humanity on building energy-efficient homes, she met an administrator in the Department of Veterans Affairs who mentioned the high unemployment rates plaguing veterans, particularly young ones. "I couldn't understand how people put their lives on the line, and then they would come back and couldn't find a job," DeHaven says. When 23-year-old Iraq war veteran Paul Hess showed up on her doorstep a few months later looking for work, a seed was planted. Green Collar Vets was born.
DeHaven and Georgia Richey, an insurance agent and "green friend," founded the nonprofit organization in early 2007. The goal: to create a green-collar workforce for burgeoning industries, which often have a shortage of quality laborers, by training unemployed veterans. "They have strong skill sets," DeHaven says. "Why not pull them into an industry that's growing by leaps and bounds?" The jobs that DeHaven has in mind might be anything from solar panel installation to organic agriculture to weatherizing houses.
Green is sexy. Sergeant Hess is smoking hot. But it was his work ethic that impressed DeHaven. "He's a quick study," she says. "He takes pride in his work. He's respectful. All the characteristics that, as an employer, you'd look for." DeHaven and Richey are not shy about parading him in his military dress blues to raise awareness of their endeavors.
With funding from private donations and grants, Green Collar Vets plans to open chapters around the country. "When a local chapter adopts a veteran, we're going to try to spend an average of $2,500, with a maximum of $5,000, per veteran," says Richey. "Our mission is to make it easy for vets to find jobs and training," even beyond what the GI Bill may cover.
Veterans will have to apply competitively to be sponsored by a local chapter, and a new Web site (www.greencollarvets.org) will serve as a nationwide clearinghouse of information. DeHaven hopes that 5 percent of all vets involved will eventually start their own green businesses. The nonprofit may get a boost from the Energy Independence and Security Act, signed into law in December 2007, which, among other things, authorizes $125 million annually for green-collar jobs training.
"Does going green cost more initially?" DeHaven asks. "Maybe, but let's look at the long-term vision. We're a country that's into instant gratification, but I think we're starting to appreciate that we have to look at longer returns than an hour and a half from now."
Jyl DeHaven is a visionary entrepreneur with real estate and management experience that understands the intricacies of developing energy efficient, environmentally sensitive, and socially responsible commercial and residential projects that make economic sense. She has focused on the rapidly growing “green” industry for over a decade and has become a regional expert in the integrative approach to developing sustainable and smart growth development projects. She is currently a member on Fort Worth's Sustainability Task Force.
Ms. DeHaven is actively involved in public and industry associations such as Urban Land Institute, North Central Texas Council of Governments, US Green Building Council, Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW), Habitat for Humanity, Urban Forestry Board, and the Master Planning Committee for Urban Village Revitalization.
Ms. DeHaven has founded several commercial and non-profit ventures including the following:
Green Urban Development
Ms. DeHaven is CEO and co-founder of Green Urban Development, a limited partnership serving as the general partner for “green”, sustainable real estate projects. The company’s specialties include mixed-use, urban-infill, building reuse, transit oriented, and traditional neighborhood developments.
Going Green USA
Ms. DeHaven is the founder of Going Green USA, a consulting company that assists clients in “greening” their interior product and finish choices of live, work, and play real estate projects.
Green Collar Vets
Ms. DeHaven is the co-founder of Green Collar Vets, a nonprofit organization that provides training and business support to veterans at a local, regional, and national basis. These men and women – most of whom are returning veterans of Iraq and now out of the military – are trained in the booming industries related to the energy efficient, environmentally sensitive movement. This skilled work force of installers specializes in green products and finishes.
Fort Worth, TX
Meet the developers, business owners, city officials, and good citizens who are creating a sustainable city. For them, green is not just a marketing plan. It’s a way of life.
by Jessica Jones, Dawn McMullan, Stacey Yervasi, and Loyd Zisk, photography by Elizabeth Lavin
From D Magazine Special Report Dallas Goes Green
Founder, Arbiter Inc., Going Green USA, Green Collar Vets, Green Urban Development
If local businesses won’t go green, Jyl DeHaven has a solution: “We’re not going to ask nicely. We’re going to give you support, give you a deadline, or it’s a 2-by-4 between the eyes.”
Green Collar Vets has created a lot of publicity for DeHaven, who does many interviews with former U.S. Marine Paul Hess. At 23, Hess is the only certified installer of American Clay Earth Plaster in the state. American Clay is a green interior and ceiling wall plaster that does cool things like prevent mildew and alleviate allergy symptoms. The clay is green. Hess is hot. Now that’s an easy environmental sell.
Through Green Urban Development, DeHaven is working on the Urban Race Street project a mile from downtown Fort Worth. Consider it a green West Village.
“Green is just my deal,” DeHaven says. “I spend lots of time overcoming the idea that it costs too much, pointing out there’s almost always a payback. Consumers don’t want a lecture. They want to hear that this is just a cool way to do business.”
Tuesday, April 20
10:00 am Welcome
Greg Wortham – Texas Wind Energy Clearinghouse – Sweetwater
10:15 am Participants’ self introduction
10:30 am Opening keynote
Mike Sloan – Virtus Energy Research Associates – Austin
Speaker will discuss the state of the solar energy industry in Texas and the USA, focusing on such matters as policy evolution, technological innovations, comparative energy economics, and integration of solar energy into grid operations
11:15 am Solar energy policy overview
Richard Amato – Texas Solar Energy Society – Austin
Steve Wiese – Texas Renewable Energy Industries Association – Austin
Speakers will discuss Texas, USA, and local initiatives to advance solar energy utilization, evolution of solar policy, and outlook for near-term and mid-term expansion of solar energy deployment.
12 noon Networking luncheon
1:30 pm Concentrated solar energy case studies
Lauren Engineers – Abilene, Texas
Speaker will discuss design, engineering, construction & operations of some the USA’s & world’s most innovative and largest concentrated solar energy projects – from Nevada to Florida
2:15 pm Break
2:30 pm Solar energy workforce
Sidney Bolfing – Texas State Technical College, Waco
Georgia Richey – Green Collar Vets, Fort Worth
Speakers will discuss current technical training programs in solar energy – from rooftop installations to major project operations.
3:15 pm Energy Surplus Building Case Study
Jyl DeHaven – Prism 3 Solutions LLC, Fort Worth
Speaker will discuss the pending rehabilitation of The Doscher Building in downtown Sweetwater to produce more energy than the building consumes. This project will rehab historic 1928 office building into Class A office space, upscale residential, fine dining, and conference setting. Elements of the rehab include appropriate use of solar, wind, and geothermal energy for a showcase result.
4:00 pm Adjourn until networking reception
6:00 pm-8:00 pm Networking Reception – 117 E. 3rd St, Sweetwater, TX 79556
Summit participants will join with speakers, other Summit attendees, and energy leaders from the region to discuss conference topics and new business opportunities on The Patio @ The Wind Center in the historic R.A. Ragland Building in downtown
Sweetwater on the north side of the Nolan County Courthouse Square.
☼ Premium Texas wines ☼ Margaritas ☼ Beer ☼ Tex-Mex hors d’oeuvres ☼
☼ Powerful business connections ☼
Wednesday, April 21
9:00 am Urban action case studies – Austin
Michael Osborne – Austin Energy
Speaker will discuss the range of solar energy initiatives that are being undertaken by Austin Energy – from rooftop rebates to smart design to utility-scale projects
9:45 am Urban action case studies – Houston
Jennifer Ronk – Houston Advanced Research Center
Speaker will discuss innovations in one of the USA’s largest cities – from municipal action to energy efficiency retrofits to solar energy initiatives
10:30 am Break
11:15 am Solar interconnection issues
Hala Ballouz – Electric Power Engineers
Speaker will discuss issues related to interconnection of solar energy resources (building scale to concentrated solar) in the Electric Reliability Council of Texas – ERCOT – and in the Southwest Power Pool – SPP – in federal jurisdiction regions. Speaker will discuss similarities and distinctions vis-à-vis wind energy systems
12 noon Networking luncheon
1:30 pm Earth, wind & fire – Landowner lease issues in oil, wind & solar energy
Rod Wetsel – Wetsel & Carmichael, Sweetwater
Attorney will discuss the synergies and differences in land leases and impacts for oil, wind, and solar energy development opportunities.
2:15 pm Texas supply chain – manufacturing of solar components & services
Barr Fabrication – Brownwood
Michael Collins – Dallas, TX & Norman, OK
Greg Wortham – Texas Wind Energy Clearinghouse
Speakers will discuss Texas supply chain status and opportunities related to solar energy expansion.
3:00 pm Policy & regulatory regional outlook
Greg Wortham – Attorney -- Sweetwater
Former Washington & Austin regulatory attorney will discuss the status of policy & regulatory proceedings regarding solar energy integration in Texas, USA Great Plains, and federal level
3:30 pm Regional action discussion
4:00 pm Conference adjourns
Wetsel & Carmichael Llp
Conference Site: Texas State Technical College – Student Center (4CTR) – Seminar Room
Interstate 20 – Exit 240 – Loop 170 (Avenger Field Road) – Just west of Sweetwater, Texas -- immediately adjacent to Avenger Field Airport
Design for Density
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
Fort Worth Convention Center
8:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.
What a time to live in Fort Worth! Major projects are unveiled almost weekly, our population rapidly approaches seven hundred thousand, and Fort Worth continues to gain recognition as one of the nation’s most livable cities. It’s not surprising that this rapid change has triggered discussions about a wide range of issues related to our city’s future. You probably have heard – or have asked – questions like these…
“The City Council is encouraging density and compact development in certain areas. How do we ensure that these projects enhance Fort Worth’s appeal and quality of life?”
“Many of the new developments in these targeted areas are affordable only to wealthy households. How do we provide housing for the rest of us?”
“Major projects are underway throughout the historic sections of our central city. How do we encourage new growth and protect our treasured historic commercial and residential buildings?”
“Air pollution and congestion are getting worse, and gas prices are climbing. How do we improve our transportation network to make it easier to get around on foot, bicycle, or mass transit?”
“Today we’re more aware of development’s environmental impacts. How do we promote ‘green building’ and minimize damage to our natural resources and climate?”
Design for Density will bring national, regional, and local experts together to lead a highly interactive discussion about the steps we should take to shape Fort Worth’s future. Join neighborhood leaders, developers, business owners, and public officials at this exciting one-day conference. With so much progress underway, the manner in which we build – and, in many areas, rebuild – our city is more important than ever. Don’t miss it!
8:00 – 8:30 a.m. Registration and Continental Breakfast
8:35 – 8:45 a.m. Welcome from Mayor Mike Moncrief
8:45 – 9:30 a.m. Keynote – David Rusk
“How to Create Sustainable Urban Neighborhoods”
9:35 – 9:50 a.m. Special Guest Speaker – Denver Mayor John Hickenlooper
“The Denver Experience”
9:55 – 10:50 a.m. Panel Discussion
“Where Does Fort Worth Go From Here?”
n Moderated by Fernando Costa, Director, Planning and Development
P A N E L I S T S
q Transportation – Paul Moore, Senior Engineer, Glatting Jackson Kercher Anglin (Atlanta)
q Preservation – Mayor John Hickenlooper
q Sustainable Design – Tony Nelessen
q Urban Housing – David Rusk
n Questions and Answers
11:00 – 11:45 p.m. Breakout Sessions
Curvie Hawkins Director of Planning, Fort Worth Transportation Authority
Mark Rauscher Manager, Transportation Programming and Capital Projects, Fort Worth
Mike Sims Senior Program Manager, North Central Texas Council of Governments
Paul Moore* Senior Transportation Engineer, Glatting Jackson Kercher Anglin (Atlanta)
Bill Franks Developer, Spire Realty Group (Houston)
Virginia McAlester Author of Field Guide to American Houses and Historic Neighborhood Advocate
Ed Vanston Developer, Carillon Group (specializing in historic properties)
Ames Fender* Fort Worth Historic and Cultural Landmarks Commission
q SUSTAINABLE DESIGN
Jyl DeHaven Developer, Green Urban Development
Betsy del Monte Architect, The Beck Group
Donald Gatzke Dean, University of Texas at Arlington School of Architecture
Tony Nelessen* Principal, A. Nelessen Associates, Inc.
q URBAN HOUSING
Councilman Sal Espino Fort Worth City Council, District 2 (morning)
Jerome Walker Housing Director, City of Fort Worth (afternoon)
Tom Struhs Residential Developer, Fort Worth
Jeff Redmond Director of Multifamily Mortgage Finance, Enterprise Community Investment
David Rusk* Author, Inside Game/Outside Game
11:45 – 1:15 p.m. Lunch Speaker – Tony Nelessen “How Should Fort Worth Design for Density?”
1:25 – 2:10 p.m. Afternoon Breakout Sessions (Repeat morning sessions)
2:15 – 2:30 p.m. Breakout Session Summaries and Closing Remarks
Session Leaders (to date)
Fernando Costa – Planning and Development Director, City of Fort Worth
Jyl DeHaven – Developer, Green Urban Development
Betsy del Monte – Architect, The Beck Group
Donald Gatzke – Dean, University of Texas at Arlington School of Architecture
Councilman Sal Espino – Fort Worth City Council, District 2
Ames Fender – Fort Worth Historic and Cultural Landmarks Commission
Bill Franks – Developer, Spire Realty Group (Houston)
Curvie Hawkins – Director of Planning, Fort Worth Transportation Authority
Virginia McAlester – Author of Field Guide to American Houses and Historic Neighborhood Advocate
Paul Moore – Senior Transportation Engineer, Glatting Jackson Kercher Anglin (Atlanta)
Mark Rauscher – Manager, Transportation Programming and Capital Projects, Fort Worth
Jeff Redmond – Director of Multifamily Mortgage Finance, Enterprise Community Investment
Mike Sims – Senior Program Manager, North Central Texas Council of Governments
Tom Struhs – Residential Developer, UpTown Fort Worth
Ed Vanston – Developer, Carillon Group (specializing in historic properties)
Jerome Walker – Housing Director, City of Fort Worth
….and more to come!