Sustainable Requirements Embraced by City of Key West

On November 6, the City of Key West Commission adopted a Building Permit Allocation System (BPAS) Ordinance codifying the competitive application process requirements for residential development in the city. 

The ordinance requires that, as a prerequisite for application eligibility, all new residential development and redevelopment constituting more than 50% of the value of the structure, enabled through a BPAS allocation, be LEED Certified or certified FGBC Bronze. 

This is the first time any sustainable requirements or certifications will be required for new residential units.  The Keys Branch will be hosting a program in January 2014 to help explain the residential certification process and requirements for LEED and FGBC.

All residential development within Monroe County has been regulated by the State Department of Economic Opportunity
since 1993.  The City of Key West will be receiving 91 new residential building permit units (transient, permanent and affordable) from the State for allocation every year beginning in January of 2014 (182 units the first year) for the next 9 years.

Two of our Keys Branch members, Nicole Malo (City Planner) and Alison Higgins (Sustainability Coordinator), helped create the ordinance, which has three sustainable requirements -- in order to obtain the units, an applicant has to be 1.5 feet above FEMA base flood elevation, have a rainwater catchment (and redistribution) system installed on the property; and have the certifications noted above. 

Listen to the NPR report of "Key West Awash With
Plans For Rising Sea Level" here.

Congratulations to the terrific advocacy efforts of Nicole and Alison and the Keys Branch, and a salute to the City of Key West Commission for a position well taken. 


The Keys Branch is our Chapter's newest Branch, officially becoming a "provisional" Branch in May 2011.  The Keys Branch generally hosts educational programs on a quarterly basis.  Check the Chapter's calendar of events for specific dates, or sign up for membership in the Chapter and receive notice of upcoming programs (in all Branches).  The Keys Branch will generally begin their sessions with GREENworking at 5:30pm, moving on to an educational presentation starting at 6:30pm.  Meeting locations and times are subject to change.

Keys Branch Governing Council

Chair -- Nicole Malo
Vice-Chair -- Johnnie Youngue
Treasurer -- Bert Bender
Secretary -- Anthony Sarno
Immediate Past Chair -- Bill Horn

Committe Leadership

Communications -- Rick Milelli
Membership -- various -- contact Bill Horn
Programs -- Kevin Sullivan
Advocacy -- Alison Higgins
Residential Green Building -- Co-Chairs Bob Delaune and Chris Fogerty
Emerging Professionals -- Co-Chairs Aileen Garrido and Olivia Ellsworth


The Branch's leadership team and committee make-up is comprised entirely of volunteers.  Thanks solely to these unselfish individuals' dedication, passion, expertise and, very often, long hours of volunteerism, the Keys Branch is making terrific inroads in spreading the good word about green-building initiatives.  If you are interested in learning about sustainability and green building, and if you value camaraderie, teamwork and fun, email Bill Horn and have a discussion about joining our volunteer Branch family.  You won't regret it! 

History of Our Branch 

The former Miami-Dade and the Keys Branch became a "provisional" Branch of the USGBC South Florida Chapter in May 2011.  During the prior two years, it became evident that the Keys' interest in green-building education and sustainability was growing exponentially, and that commutes north to the Miami region for programs were becoming less convenient for interested individuals.  The notion of breaking the existing Branch into two distinct, organized bodies gained support during this time period. 

In the Fall of 2010, the Branch Governing Council of the MDK Branch held meetings designed to sketch out a game plan to create a leadership team for a separate Keys Branch.  Over the course of the following months, myriad training sessions took place and a solid base of support to manage a Branch south of Miami began to emerge. 

With an ever-increasing number of members in Monroe County, as well as a solid leadership group, the Chapter's Board of Directors formed the Keys Branch on a provisional basis as called for in the nonprofit organization's


Upcoming Chapter Events

22 Apr 2015 • Click on Image ...
23 Apr 2015 5:30 PM • Pine Jog Environmental Education Center, 6301 Summit Blvd. West Palm Beach 33415
24 Apr 2015 9:00 AM • FIU Kovens Conference Center, 3000 Northeast 151st Street, North Miami Beach, FL
25 Apr 2015 8:30 AM • Mc Nair Community Center, 951 NW 27th Ave Pompano Beach, Fl 33069

Special Honoree

At the January Keys program, Ada Truesdell was honored by the USGBC South Florida Chapter Board of Directors for her outstanding contributions as the Chair of the Keys Branch.  Bill Horn presented Ada with a beautifully engraved crystal momento. CONGRATULATIONS, ADA!

It's 5 o'clock Somewhere!

The Florida Keys!  These beautiful drive-to islands are rich in arts and culture, the wild outdoors, eco-tours, walking trails, environmental centers and a plethora of
green travel accommodations and shopping opportunities. 

And the USGBC is now in town!  Please consider a Keys weekend and come support the USGBC South Florida Chapter's newest Branch!

Sponsor Our Branch Programs

There are many outstanding marketing benefits that accrue to sponsors of our Keys Branch's educational programs. To learn more about sponsor benefits click here.  To discuss a specific Keys Branch program, contact tbd. 

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