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MRIS Sprouts Earth Day with Greater Washington, D.C. Top Ten Green Neighborhoods

April 21, 2011  |  by Anne

MRIS just released a list of Top Green Neighborhoods – with areas like Ballston, Bethesda, and Columbia Heights noted for their premier green places and community-wide green projects. 

MRIS is trailblazing an effort to green the MLS.  Individual homes with green features reduce energy bills, preserve the local environment, and help a home sell faster even in a recovering market.  As a real estate professional do you know how to market a green home efficiently?  Which Keystone elements do you find most often?  Share your feedback in the comments section below or on our Facebook page.  

As you know, green elements span the gamut from geo-thermal heat pumps to vegetative roofs.  According to MRIS data, there are currently 95 active listings with geo-thermal heat pumps and 1100 active listings with a programmable thermostat.   

MRIS compiled the list by collecting the most recent MLS data, and surveying local parks and area green initiatives. Based on this hyperlocal data, MRIS notes the following as the top green neighborhoods in the greater D.C. area:

  • Ballston (VA)

Ballston is showing clear efforts to educate the public about environmental improvements, through its initiative to reduce emissions, and its innovation in building Virginia’s first LEED platinum house.  Our hats are off to Ballston for working to demonstrating the county’s long-term commitment to environmental responsibility.

  • Bethesda (MD)

Bethesda is home to DC’s first Passive Design House. It also has a number of green initiatives to cut greenhouse gas emissions and implement green jobs.

  • Capitol Hill (DC)

Capitol Hill is abundant with green homes and buildings and offers close proximity to the city’s largest farmer’s market – Eastern Market –  and famous green spaces and gardens -most notably the Botanical Gardens. When visiting Eastern Market, scoop up some fresh fruits and vegetables – we suggest:

  • Sunnyside Farm
  • Old Mountain Valley Farms
  • Dunham’s Produce


  • Crestwood (DC)

Crestwood borders Rock Creek Park, which contains 1,754 acres of green space and nature-related activities. Crestwood also has a neighborhood plan to conserve and preserve their community. Rock Creek Park is twice the size of Central Park, so being close has its green perks:

  • 20 miles of trails for running/hiking
  • Equestrian trails
  • 1,754 acres of park & nature
  • Nature center and picnicking sites
  • Columbia Heights(DC)

Columbia Heights is home to DC’s first solar powered condos, as well as DC’s largest residential solar thermal project.  There are only three solar powered condos currently two blocks from the metro – we think more will be springing up!

  • Mount Rainier (MD)

Mount Rainier has a number of green building initiatives and projects, as well as an abundance of green space including the Mount Rainier Nature and Recreation Center.  We love the Community Tool Shed, a collection of tools that can be used at no cost by residents to help improve their property, home repairs, yard improvements, and care of public spaces.

  • Old Town Alexandria (VA)

Old Town Alexandria is the home to the first LEED certified condo building in the state of Virginia. It also takes part in all of Alexandra’s green initiatives, including the Green Building Policy and the Go Green Alexandria project.

  • Petworth (DC)

Petworth is home to DC’s first LEED platinum condo development and it encompasses a number of parks and lush green areas, including Rock Creek Cemetery. Other green pluses for Petworth are:

  • Multiple dog parks
  • Sherman and Grant Circle Parks are in the neighborhood


  • Takoma Park (MD)

Takoma Park features 17 acres of green space and parks, including Sligo Creek Park. It is also home to a number of green buildings and community projects.  On the area’s main street of Carroll you will find TPSS, a popular cooperative promoting clean and friendly products. 

  • Woodley Park (DC)

Woodley Park is surrounded by green space and offers a number of public transportation options. Woodley Park is in walking distance to the National Zoo and a number of local parks, including the largest in DC, Rock Creek Park. Woodley Park gets our vote in part due to:

  • Proximity to Rock Creek Park
  • Lots of public transportation
  • Loads of green space
  • Peaceful environment
  • Vast number of local parks and playgrounds
  • Backs up to the National Zoo


“Green isn’t a fad, it is a key part of communities and towns,” states Tim Campbell. “We are leading discussions with local real estate professionals and brokers as well as agents across the country to “green the MLS” – an initiative started in 2009 to track green communities, real estate trends, and property specs.  Green is good – it’s healthy to live in a green area, energy-efficient fixtures keep bills and housing costs down, and green elements typically help a house sell quickly or at least set it apart from others on the market.” 

Not sure why a green MLS is the way to go? Check out this great resource from our friends at NAR and NAR’s Green REsource Council.   Join us in the “greening the MLS” discussion – we look forward to hearing from you!  Add a comment below or share your green thoughts on our Facebook page.

Posted in Blog, Industry News

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