Commerce releases new Evergreen Sustainable Development Standard 

  • April 29, 2021

Updated standard is required for all affordable housing projects seeking state capital funding

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The Washington State Department of Commerce today released Version 4.0 of the Evergreen Sustainable Development Standard (ESDS). Compliance with the updated ESDS will be required of all affordable housing projects applying for funds from the state Housing Trust Fund in 2021.

Projects that received awards from other funders in 2020, but were not fully funded, will be required to comply with the prior ESDS Version 3.0.

ESDS is a green building performance standard that went into effect in 2008 in response to RCW 39.35D.080. Compliance with ESDS is required of all affordable housing projects receiving capital funds from the state Housing Trust Fund and from other public funding entities that have also adopted ESDS. The standard sets requirements and outlines paths that increase long-term sustainability, reduce ecological impacts and encourage healthy living environments whenever affordable housing is built or renovated.

Since inception, ESDS has been modified and updated three times through a collaborative process by an advisory committee of affordable housing stakeholders, housing developers and local governments administering capital funding programs. Work on the current Version 4.0 began in 2019 and provided two public comment periods, with the final completed earlier this month.

Comprehensive documents available now for developers and builders include an Evergreen Project Plan, life cycle cost-analysis tool, detailed instructions, checklist and more.

Find Version 4.0 of the Evergreen Sustainable Development Standard here.

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