According to a National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) study, the construction 100 single-family houses typically generates $28,670,800 in wages, taxes and income for local businesses. It also supports 394 jobs. After construction is finished, 100 occupied new homes add around $4 million and 69 jobs each year to the local economy.But of course there are big environmental costs.
Building a typical two-bedroom house produces around 80 tons of carbon dioxide emissions, which is equal to the emissions of about five new cars.Not to mention, all those materials came from someplace in nature.
This article offers a few green building strategies to reduce these impacts, but I would add:
Redevelop. Rather than sprawling over more and more habitat, upgrade old (non-historic), inefficient properties, increasing density where appropriate.
Reuse. Don’t demolish old structures; deconstruct them. And then reuse or recycle components. One building in Portland claimed to have reused or recycled over 90% of the materials.