Rochester New York, a city which thrived on manufacturing in the 1900’s, has declined over the years. The impacts of the economic down turn, suburbanization, and the highway system impeding pedestrian access to downtown Rochester, all took their toll on the city’s once vibrant urban fabric which has now deteriorated into surface parking and buildings in disrepair. The city of Rochester has started a conscious effort to rebuild its downtown which brings with it an increased population. This increased population begins to strain an already struggling municipality and city thus spreading the services provided by the municipality thin; causing yet another strain on the low-income communities. While the solutions for addressing these problems do nothing but raise our carbon footprint. At the global level, District 2030 has been leading the charge toward carbon neutrality and resource efficiency by developing a systematic approach toward achieving district or citywide carbon neutrality by 2030. With regard to the city of Rochester, since the increase in population is directly related to the increase in the city’s carbon emissions, I propose that the city of Rochester join District 2030 and become carbon neutral by the year 2030. To achieve this goal, my investigation will address the revitalization efforts of the city with an alternate and sustainable solution by (1) Determining the current energy consumption of the Rochester district, Beechwood, (2) Developing a schematic district level carbon neutral system to implement in Beechwood, (3) Determining the energy and CO2 emissions offset in Beechwood and (4) Discussing the implementation of Carbon Neutral buildings to support the goal of carbon neutrality in Rochester.
Department, Program, or Center
Rau, Charles, "Revitalizing Low Income Communities Using Carbon Neutral Buildings" (2017). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
RIT – Main Campus