In Brief (Green Edition): Marriott Builds LEED Protoype and Blair Kamin Gets Fed Up with Vanity Fair‘s ‘World Architecture Survey’

A very miscellaneous collection of all-things-green here, so let’s just jump right in. First comes an announcement from the hotel chain Marriott that they’ve developed a new prototype for future building projects with full LEED certification. Working with the U.S. Green Building Council, the company plans to have 300 LEED-certified hotels by 2015, with this first using this prototype completed by 2012 in a suburb of Charleston, South Carolina. Less positive greening news comes in this story from the University of Kansas’ School of Architecture, Design and Planning, where students worked on a long-term project building impressive, energy efficient, LEED platinum homes in the Kansas City area, only to see them continue to sit on the market for months, unsold. Says the professor at the head of the project, “…many people ‘talk the talk’ about sustainability, but don’t want to pay a bit more for it.” Last, the Chicago Tribune‘s Blair Kamin finally decided that he could sit quietly no longer and had to respond to the much-discussed “World Architecture Survey” published recently by Vanity Fair. Initially ignoring the piece because he’d found it “a pretty harmless, attention-getting device,” he then heard one of the authors of the Survey’s connecting essays, Matt Tyrnauer, talking to NPR about why no green buildings made it on to the list. “These buildings in general don’t look so hot because they have to do a lot of things that buildings traditionally never did,” said Trynauer in the interview. This was Kamin’s breaking point and he files this great response, bringing out Renzo Piano‘s California Academy of Sciences building and Jeanne Gang‘s Aqua along the way to prove that the writer’s comment was more than a bit foolish.