Enterprise, IWBI Join Forces to Advance Health and Well-Being in Affordable Housing
Collaboration will focus on creating homes that help people thrive
NEW YORK and COLUMBIA, Md. (Oct. 21, 2019) – Enterprise Community Partners Inc. (Enterprise) and the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) announced today that they are developing a multi-pronged collaboration to create and implement a shared vision for affordable homes that improve residents’ health and well-being.
The collaboration leverages the experience and vision of Enterprise, the leading market advocate for improving the availability and quality of green, healthy, affordable homes across the country with the deep technical knowledge and market transformation expertise of IWBI, the creators of the premier health and wellness building standard.
Working with IWBI, Enterprise is creating a best-in-class certification pathway within its Green Communities Criteria, focused on making well-designed homes affordable as well as advancing health outcomes for low- and moderate-income communities. With the integration of key aspects of WELL 2.0 into the criteria, affordable housing developers will have a flexible roadmap for achieving higher levels of health and wellness benefits that are firmly rooted in the latest scientific evidence and design best practices. Beginning next year, affordable housing that certifies to Enterprise’s Green Communities 2020 Criteria will also be certified to WELL.
“We couldn’t be more excited about this collaboration with Enterprise,” said IWBI President Rachel Gutter. “Now with the criteria integration complete, the next step is to identify projects we can jointly support and certify to showcase the myriad benefits to residents as well as the short and long-term cost effectiveness of putting people’s health at the center of the decisions for designing, building and operating the places where they live their lives.”
“Our partnership with the WELL team builds on Enterprise’s deep commitment to advancing health outcomes through the design and creation of resilient, green and affordable homes,” said Enterprise President Laurel Blatchford. “By creating homes and communities with wellness as the foundation, we can lessen health concerns often seen with unstable housing, such as asthma and mental health issues, while decreasing emergency room visits and in-patient hospitalizations.”
Through the collaboration, Enterprise and IWBI will also advance research and stronger public policy that leads to improved housing options for all.
About Enterprise Community Partners
Enterprise is a proven and powerful nonprofit that improves communities and people’s lives by making well-designed homes affordable and connected to opportunity. As a social enterprise, we bring together the nationwide know-how, policy leadership, partners, donors and investors to multiply the impact of local affordable housing development. Over more than 35 years, Enterprise has created 585,000 homes, invested more than $43 billion and touched millions of lives.
Enterprise developed the Green Communities Criteria in 2004, leading the industry in bringing improved health, economic and environmental benefits of sustainable construction practices to low-income families. In 15 years, more than $3.9 billion has been invested in the development and preservation of 127,000 green, affordable homes.
About the International WELL Building Institute
The International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) is leading the global movement to transform our buildings and communities in ways that help people thrive. The WELL v2 pilot is the latest version of its popular WELL Building Standard, and the WELL Community Standard pilot is a district scale rating system that sets a new global benchmark for healthy communities. WELL is focused exclusively on the ways that buildings and communities, and everything in them, can improve our comfort, drive better choices, and generally enhance, not compromise, our health and wellness. IWBI convenes and mobilizes the wellness community through management of the WELL AP credential, the pursuit of applicable research, the development of educational resources, and advocacy for policies that promote health and wellness everywhere. More information on WELL can be found here.