Lamis Behbehani, Linda Prokopy



This interdisciplinary research study explores the environmental awareness, attitudes and behaviours of residents of a low-income, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified, multifamily, heritage-listed housing development in the Midwest region of the United States. Through in-depth semi-structured face-to-face interviews and review of site photographs and online and archived news articles, the causal factors for and links between environmental behaviours, LEED and built heritage were explored. The findings reveal that the LEED features the residents valued in hierarchical order were: location, the building’s historic and renovated characteristics, its energy conservation system and the cleanliness and upkeep of the premises. The valued non-LEED features were security and privacy. Additionally, the findings show that residents possess a level of critical thinking and opinion pertaining to the importance of their residence as a restored building. The residents were highly aware of their own, their social group’s and the management’s behaviors and of the value of their property in terms of its historic significance and public image and presence in the neighborhood and among their social networks.


Built heritage; low-income; multifamily housing; LEED; environmental behaviors; qualitative research

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