The plan for the Olympic Village, the temporary home to 17,000 athletes from around the world during the recent Olympic games, has been awarded LEED®-Gold certification by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) under its pilot LEED for Neighborhood Development certification program.

The Beijing Olympic Village is the first Olympic Village to receive LEED certification, and as part of the pilot program, it is one of only eight developments – and the first international project – to thus far achieve certification under LEED for Neighborhood Development. The pilot program began with a call for pilot projects in early 2007. Nearly 240 projects from 39 states and six countries are now registered to participate in the pilot program. The information learned during the pilot program will be used to make further revisions to the rating system and certification process, and the resulting draft rating system will be posted for public comment before it is submitted for final approvals and balloting.

LEED for Neighborhood Development integrates the principles of smart growth, New Urbanism and green building into a comprehensive system for neighborhood design. The result of a collaboration among USGBC, the Congress for the New Urbanism and the Natural Resources Defense Council, LEED for Neighborhood Development certifies neighborhoods for their design and performance in four categories: Smart Location & Linkage, Neighborhood Pattern & Design, Green Construction & Technology, and Innovation & Design Process. The Green Construction & Technology category awards developments for their integration of green infrastructure elements and the green building principles promoted by the other LEED certification programs.  Depending on the number of points a development receives in each category, LEED for Neighborhood Development certification is awarded at four levels: Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum.