Communities Building Resilience: South LA

submission by scopela

About Your Application

Organization(s) name(s):

Strategic Concepts in Organizing and Policy Education (SCOPE) & US Green Building Council Los Angeles Chapter (USGBC-LA)

Organization(s) website(s):

Organization(s) twitter handle(s):

Organization(s) facebook handle(s):

Organization(s) instagram handle(s):

Describe Your Organization(s)

Non-profit organization

For-profit organization


Other (please specify below):

In one sentence, please describe what your organization does.


SCOPE builds community power in South LA to ensure equitable investment in disadvantaged communities. USGBC-LA promotes sustainability and resilience in LA’s built environment by delivering education, resources and recognition.

In one to three sentences, please describe your proposal.


Low-income communities are most vulnerable to the threats of disaster. SCOPE has partnered with USGBC-LA and USGBC National on a long-term vision to promote resilience in South Los Angeles. The USGBC-LA is developing a Building Resilience Certification System to incentivize solutions for buildings and communities. Our project will create both a real world example of community resilience building, as well as tools to replicate the process in other communities.

Where will you be working? Please be specific (e.g. Third Street Middle School; Boyle Heights; LA County).

Central LA

East LA

San Gabriel Valley

San Fernando Valley

South LA


South Bay

Antelope Valley

County of Los Angeles (countywide)

City of Los Angeles (citywide)


Other (please specify below):

How do you plan to use these resources to make change? (check all that apply)

Conduct research

Engage residents and stakeholders

Implement a pilot or new project

Expand a pilot or program

Mobilize for systems change

Advocate with policymakers and leaders

Implement and track policy

Other (please specify below):


Build a toolkit

How will your proposal improve the following “Live” metrics? (check all that apply)

Access to healthy food

Healthcare access

Exposure to air toxins

Number of households below the self-sufficiency index

Percent of imported water

Obesity rates

Housing affordability

Rates of homelessness

Walk/bike/transit score

Acres and miles of polluted waterways

Rates of mental illness

Prevalence of adverse childhood experiences (Dream Metric)

Percentage of LA communities that are resilient (Dream Metric)

Percentage of residents receiving coordinated healthcare services (Dream Metric)

Percentage of tree canopy cover (Dream Metric)

Describe in greater detail how you will make LA the healthiest place to live.


Between climate change, urbanization and globalization, disasters are increasing. According to the City of Los Angeles Emergency Management Department, LA is prone to 13 of the 16 possible types of natural and human-caused disasters. The US Geological Survey estimates the probability of an earthquake greater than 6.7 hitting California in the next 30 years is 99%. Our growing population depends on an aging infrastructure for water, energy, food and other basic needs.

Resilience is the capacity of individuals, organizations and communities to survive and thrive in the face of stressors and shocks. The shocks are the big disruptive events that make headlines. But it is the stressors that determine our ability to respond and recover. Nowhere are stressors more pronounced than in communities like South LA, where chronic disinvestment and lack of opportunity have left people with few reserve resources to fall back on. A resilient community is more than prepared—it is strong, connected and healthy. It creates good jobs and opportunities. It increases access to transit, food, and other critical services. Its networks of mutual support complements government initiatives, fostering social cohesion at the neighborhood level.

SCOPE and USGBC-LA have partnered to create both a real world example of community resilience building, as well as tools to replicate the process in other communities. We will focus on the SCOPE facility and neighborhood as an epicenter of a green and resilient community. Drawing on SCOPE’s deep community connection and active engagement processes, we will generate a long-term community vision, and identify and implement physical improvements of the SCOPE facility and the surrounding neighborhood. Examples include installing green infrastructure to reduce heat island, infiltrate stormwater and bring greatly needed trees and gardens to the area; a solar system that can both generate clean energy and support an emergency cooling station; or seismic retrofits to make the building a safe space following a disaster. All implementation will support local job training opportunities.

Lessons learned from this process will inform development of the Building Resilience-LA program. This USGBC-LA led effort to create a voluntary certification system for resilience will improve the built environment and support social capital across our region, so that all Angelenos can survive and thrive in the face of whatever comes our way.

Please explain how you will evaluate your work.


These criteria will help us evaluate our work:
• The number of community members who actively engage in the resilience process
• Incorporation of job training into implementation of all projects
• Environmental metrics appropriate to targeted measures (e.g. water or energy saved)
• Survey of participants to assess levels of awareness, preparedness and sense of connection as a result of the project
• Evaluations and feedback from USGBC-LA advisors and SCOPE

Our project will be also be measured by the successful completion of:
• A long-range community-driven resilience vision supported by a detailed implementation plan and milestones
• Identification, design and implementation of physical improvements in the SCOPE facility and surrounding community
• A written case study that documents and develops a replicable and scalable process for involving communities in climate resilience efforts

How can the LA2050 community and other stakeholders help your proposal succeed? (check all that apply)

Money (financial capital)

Volunteers/staff (human capital)

Publicity/awareness (social capital)

Infrastructure (building/space/vehicles, etc.)


Technical infrastructure (computers, etc.)

Community outreach

Network/relationship support

Quality improvement research

Other (please specify below):

18 Pink talk bubble tail c96b4a07ef1417e25d0bcf5c4cba4766b8bbf0382f07677990a9d5577885d4d7

South LA is right for this project and SCOPE is sooooo right for South LA. Bring it on!

by jkamensky
5 months ago

SCOPE builds community leaders and community investment at the same time- one cannot happen without the other!!

by Goodyorkchang
5 months ago

SCOPE is a trailblazer an innovator in the community! Greening the hood one block at a time. Its time that the communities impacted by climate change be at the forefront of the green movement!!

by monie979
5 months ago

Greening our city block by block!

by kward131
6 months ago

It's about time investment happens in South LA! This project has so much potential for innovative solutions to preempt what we've already witnessed with Hurricane Katrina, Superstorm Sandy and most recently Hurricane Patricia- those with the least suffer the most when disaster hits. Let's not let that happen here in LA, and let's not only set an example for the rest of the nation, but create tools and models that can be replicated across the country.

by Nayhomie
6 months ago

This project has implications for 21st century urban communities of color across the nation! Let's lead the way!

by laura.muraida
6 months ago

Black and Latino families need this investment and this critical work to plan for our future so that communities are stronger and when times get tougher with our changing climate, we have a plan that touches and connects every member in our community.

by elsabarboza
6 months ago

Let's make South LA a living example of community resilience!


by gwaltonscope
6 months ago

Social and economic resilience is just as important as building upgrades for earthquakes BUT it gets much less attention and funding. The New Orleans neighborhoods and communities that bounced back from Katrina were the ones that had social and economic resilience. Resilience pays off across a number of adversities, not just big earthquakes, too! Think resilience to financial downturns, to drought, to increasing heat waves, etc.

by deisenman
6 months ago

This project is a great way to start a conversation about preparing for climate change. We must not wait in hope of some single far reaching solution to disasters and climate changes. We should prepare ourselves for any eventuality. This project is a good way to begin. Please vote in favor of it. We cannot wait.

by tai4900
6 months ago

Great project and so very needed in LA! It's not just The Big One that we have to worry about, and this project would help us be prepared for many different challenges we may face.

by jdyer2002
6 months ago

Hoping this project comes to's so needed!

by ExecAssist
6 months ago

Climate change affects us all and we have to be prepared for the changes. We've seen the damage it can cause to our communities and if we don't work to prevent that now, it'll be too late later on. This isn't the most fun of projects, but it is one that will set a precedent that will benefit thousands.

by erick-maldonado
6 months ago

This is a great project and I can't wait to see it succeed!

by sneff
6 months ago

What a great project and qualified team to implement the task. Looking forward to see the outcome!!!

by MarineMaroukian
6 months ago

This project brings together sustainability, social equity, community cohesion, green infrastructure and emergency preparedness in new and exciting ways to make a difference where it is most needed. Support it today!

by heatherjoy
6 months ago

Very excited to see this initiative taking off!

by joshksky
6 months ago

This is such an important case study precedent to start thinking through a variety of critical facilities and institutions in terms of building resilience in the City of Los Angeles. I fully support the USGBC-LA's and SCOPE's joint project.

by Fortmeyer
6 months ago

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Award topvotedidea 5a5ae14e3d56a10363ea2a398cece46cf4df891213cbe68677c19d8903a1932a
Circle 1 inactive e7784182a1bd5eace578987db27fc19ec6337f418c48c6c8732605b9043d50d0 Step1 title submission inactive cde083e53089b973e7c9dc80a44a038c1ce4cf3b2650aeb5549157d1ed58a2d9

Submission Began
Tuesday, September 08, 2015

Submission Ended
Tuesday, October 06, 2015
at 07:00 PM UTC

Circle 2 inactive 74a43088831beb43fdbd7591ef5d50a5a7a26ff92c9e8ed489782459fa31a8d9 Step2 title voting inactive 96be722f53c417edddb5742ba9a6dc2fd403f7e4f6c19dbe883d50d20d93689d

Voting Began
Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Voting Ended
Tuesday, November 03, 2015
at 08:00 PM UTC

Circle 3 83da7a9432aeea960e1a9e9ee93e7ea1221af6c8f42b27964f2e9999d94b2b8d Step3 title 3d9e2a65d6ea1ad301f8fc607f5f828bd96362932c71d81c0da5b1fd964422b0

Winner Announced
Tuesday, December 08, 2015