College of Architecture and Planning


The ecoREHAB initiative was established in 2009. Working collaboratively with Ball State University, the City of Muncie’s Department of Community Development and the local non-profit agency ecoREHAB of Muncie, Inc. this outreach program’s aim is to provide leadership in the ecologically sound, green and sustainable rehabilitation of existing and abandoned housing. This initiative benefits not only Ball State students, but the communities of Muncie in taking steps to achieving the National Goals Towards Sustainable Development in the areas of environmental protection, economic prosperity and social equity.


Communities need resources to aid homeowners, neighborhood groups, and developers and a strategy for re-investment in the existing housing stock and older neighborhoods. These are some of the city’s greatest assets, but they are presently devalued and under-utilized. Affordability has often looked only at rents or first cost but ignore the ongoing costs of maintenance, utilities, and the long term impact on neighborhoods. The perception that costs traditionally associated with rehabbing older homes are higher than new construction leads to a desire for new housing. Yet, “the greenest building is the one that is already built,” and research shows that existing buildings have the potential to be far more energy efficient than commonly assumed. The green movement is creating an ever expanding toolbox of products, materials, and strategies that can be used to address these concerns.

EcoREHAB engages in activities that include: 1) acquisition and ecologically sustainable rehabilitation of affordable housing; 2) providing resources to aid homeowners in rehabilitation of existing housing following sustainable design, material and system strategies; and 3) other activities relative to housing that help the community to achieve the triple-bottom-line of economic prosperity, environmental protection, and social equity. The four objectives of ecoREHAB are:

  1. Rehabilitating existing houses while promoting and following green and sustainable building practices. Completed ecoREHAB projects will be economically competitive with more traditional quality rehab methods; 
  2. Providing an immersive learning experience for Ball State University students. Engage students with ecoREHAB and the City of Muncie in the planning, budgeting, administration and construction of these projects; 
  3. Establishing a design assistance center for private home owners and other non-profit entities to get design and technical assistance in sustainable design, material and system strategies for the rehabilitation of existing houses; 
  4. Offering training outreach programs to communities, community development corporations and individuals on methods of integrating similar programs and lessons learned by ecoREHAB.


To learn more about ecoREHAB, visit the website or contact Jonathan Spodek.