Growing Living Communities: Living Community Challenge v1.2

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Growing Living Communities: Living Community Challenge v1.2

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Learn about @Living_Future's newly launched Living Community Challenge version 1.2 Standard
Tuesday, July 25, 2017 - 1:00pm

CAMPAIGN: Events + Education


The International Living Future Institute launched a variety of new resources during the Living Future unConference 2017 to help teams and communities. In an effort to integrate those updates and make the Institute’s community-scale program more accessible and current with market conditions, our team launched the Living Community Challenge (LCC) version 1.2 Standard.

LCC Standard

Primary updates in the Living Community Challenge 1.2 Standard include incorporation of the Zero Energy Community CertificationSM (ZEC Certification) re-brand and a decrease in the number of required Living Building Challenge (LBC) projects in an LCC Community.

In keeping with Living Building Challenge 3.1 updates in March 2017, we have further simplified the new Zero Energy program. The LCC has removed two Imperatives: 19 Beauty + Spirit, and 20 Inspiration + Education. Imperative 01 Limits to Growth remains, along with the requirement to supply 100% of the community’s energy needs on a net annual basis by on-site renewable energy. No combustion is allowed. For communities that do not meet the Imperative 01 Limits to Growth requirement, we encourage teams to seek Zero Energy Building CertificationSM (ZEB Certification) for each of your buildings with the updated requirements of the Living Building Challenge.

The number of required LBC projects within an LCC Community has been decreased to a minimum of 50%. This is reflected on p. 15 of the LCC 1.2 Standard: "A majority of capital projects developed or renovated by the community (50% or more by area or individual building count) must meet the Living Building Challenge for the project to earn Living Community certification." Three certification pathways are still available for communities, which includes Living, Petal and Zero Energy. It should be noted that if the Community decides to pursue Petal or Zero Energy CertificationSM, the LBC Certification for the majority of capital projects should be in alignment with the same LCC Petal or Zero Energy Certification pathway pursued (example: An LCC Water Petal community should contain at least 50% individual LBC Water Petal projects). There are always unique conditions, so please feel free to contact us at with any questions.

The Institute will make every effort to reduce the burden of registration and certification fees for projects pursuing the Living Building Challenge within the Living Community Challenge project boundary area (see LCC Handbook – Section 4, Process). Communities may be eligible for a discount, and the project team should contact us and provide information detailing the number of buildings, building types, phasing, etc. While the Institute does not have a formal discount policy for multiple buildings, we are working to create a holistic policy and are happy to work with project teams on one-time exceptions in the interim.

LCC Handbook

The May 2017 Living Community Challenge 1.1 Handbook guides communities pursuing versions 1.1 and 1.2 of the LCC Standard. Two Imperative-specific updates were added in chapter 5. A new exception under Imperative 01 Limits to Growth is LCC I01-E6 05/2017

Sites Designated for Increased Density acknowledges unique cases to provide controlled human-centered development in new urban cores within an urban growth boundary. See pp. 26-27 of the LCC Handbook 1.1 for compliance information and stipulations.

A new clarification has been added to Imperative 11 Living Materials Plan. This clarification provides Living Community Challenge teams additional guidance for creating a Living Materials Implementation Plan by clarifying the requirements for community-owned buildings, infrastructure and landscapes and buildings that are not community-owned. See p. 29 of the LCC Handbook 1.1 for more information.

As always, any community leads and programmatic questions can be directed to LCC Manager Marisa Hagney at

Keywords: Education | Environment | Green Infrastructure | Innovation & Technology | International Living Futures Institute (ILFI) | Living Community Challenge | Social Impact & Volunteering

CAMPAIGN: Events + Education