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Afton PC considers implementing GreenStar building standards

Afton is taking steps to become greener than it already is, and becoming more innovative in the process.

At the April 6 meeting of the Afton Planning Commission, commissioners heard a presentation from Peter Vujovich, a representative from the design and review committee, about the Minnesota GreenStar Program.

Minnesota GreenStar is a green building ratings standard and certification program for both existing and new homes that promotes healthy, durable, high performance homes.

Green building is a "holistic approach" to building by applying the five key concepts of green building -- energy efficiency, resource efficiency, indoor environmental quality, water conservation and site and community -- to the eight requirements of the traditional building process.

The purpose of these concepts is to improve on the impact caused by building on individuals, their families, their community and the environment.

In order to become GreenStar certified a homebuilder or remodeler must go through a checklist of standards designed to address the five areas of green building.

Vujovich recently built a GreenStar certified home and he said he wanted to speak to the planning commission about the benefits of green building.

"It's a good way of doing things," he said. "But it is an experiment though."

City administrator Jim Norman said he wanted to bring this presentation to the planning commission because it could be something they could incorporate when they issue building permits.

He recommended that a checklist of the requirements could be issued to applicants.

Commissioners said they thought this was a very beneficial program and would be something they would look into in the future.

"I don't think we have to reinvent the wheel on this," Vujovich said. "Lets just get out there and see how many points we can get."

Amber Kispert-Smith

Amber Kispert-Smith has been the schools and Afton reporter at the Woodbury Bulletin since 2008. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota. She previously worked as a reporter for Press Publications in White Bear Lake.

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