When a gigantic, 1.7-mile wide tornado barreled through Kansas last May, it zeroed in on the town of Greensburg. Whipping its way down Main Street, the tornado virtually destroyed the town while killing 11 of its 1,400 citizens. The town is still struggling to rebuild, but hopes are high. Greensburg plans to rebuild itself as an example of small-town green living.
In an interview with Plenty, Daniel Wallach, director of Greensburg Greentown, said “I see us as being kind of a living science museum. People are going to be able to come from around the country and see a model community of the future, and in a scale that you can’t do in a big city.”
To find out about Greensburg's plans to make its town green, just
Greensburg's plans to become a green town include building a dozen new buildings that meet the LEED standards from the US Green Building Council. The town's city council also recently passed a resolution requiring all major city buildings to attain LEED Platinum certification, which is the USGBC’s highest standard for efficiency and sustainability, a first for any city in the US. The Baptist Church will also be LEED platinum; a senior housing project, the hospital, and the John Deere dealership will all be LEED Gold; and the GM headquarters will be LEED-certified. Many local residents are also rebuilding their homes to green standards. And even though it was the force of wind that blew this town apart, Greensburg is looking into creating a wind power plant, too.
The town is still trying to raise $45 to 60 million dollars, as FEMA wil only cover 75 percent of expenses to return buildings to predisaster conditions. And since much of Greenfield used to consist of old, rundown buildings, the town doesn't have a lot to bank on. If you or someone you know can help, send donations to South Central Community Foundation. You can also find out more about the town by visting its website.