The Green Building Certification Institute has launched a new LEED professional credential: LEED AP for Neighborhood Development (LEED AP ND).

The credential designates the specialized knowledge and experience of professionals participating in the planning and development of environmentally responsible communities. To receive the designation, professionals must pass an exam that measures knowledge of the LEED-ND rating system, introduced by the USGBC in April, and the ability to facilitate the LEED project certification process.

“LEED AP for Neighborhood Development professionals will be the driving forces behind future green communities worldwide,” says Peter Templeton, president of the certification institute. “This credential recognizes leading practitioners committed to the principles of smart growth, neighborhood design, and green building.”

LEED-ND was developed by the USGBC in partnership with the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Congress for the New Urbanism.  It encourages the development of healthier communities by reducing the environmental impact of urban sprawl, increasing alternative transportation choices, and promoting neighborhood walkability and access to public space.