Articles - January, 2008

Milk Paint Natural Green Paint

Galmayamilkpaint

Milk Paint has been around for thousands of years, with the roots as far back as 6,000 years ago when it was used for cave paintings.  It is now gaining recognition as a biodegradable, green product.  Milk paint is made from milk and crushed, natural pigments, and it is used for walls, furniture, and even art.  It is very durable, as it hardens with age.  But, beware, there are companies who market "milk paints" which are not natural and contain harmful chemicals. 

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Grand Rapids Art Museum, First LEED Gold Museum

Grand Rapids Art Museum

Grand Rapids, Michigan is one of the greenest cities in the country, at least if you go by the number of LEED certified buildings it has.  A couple of years ago, Grand Rapids was #5 on a list of cities with the most LEED certified buildings, surpassing even cities such as Chicago, San Francisco, New York, and Washington DC.  Grand Rapids also has embraced renewable energy for the city.  But Grand Rapids’ latest claim to green fame is that it is now the home to the first new construction LEED-certified art museum in the country. 

The building is a 125,000 sf structure designed by Kulapat Yantrasast of Workshop Hakomori Yantrasast (wHY Architects).  The Grand Rapids Art Museum opened just a few weeks prior to David Adjaye’s Museum of Contemporary Art in Denver, which is also expecting a LEED Gold.

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Ultimate Reuse at Freitag Shop Zurich

Freitag Flagship Store

It's hard not to gawk at the images of this building.  So industrial and modern.  It's quite striking.  Built with 17 containers in 2006, this Freitag Flagship Store is probably one of the best examples of adaptive reuse that I can recall. 

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Financing, LEED Certification, Sustainable Business, + Green Design [WIR]

Week in Review

*WIR = Week in Review; a Saturday showcase of excellent links.

Eva Longoria Talks About Green Building

Eva Longoria This is seriously lowbrow, and I’m embarrassed to join the likes of celebrity media, but ole’ Mrs. Parker has something interesting to say about green building.  She’s building a new home in San Antonio, Texas, and wants to go as green as possible.  But the builders have been giving her flack.  Apparently, the problems were so bad that the project was nearly at a standstill.  She said, "Everything is going to be environmentally friendly. We are going to install solar panels for part of the house. All our water is recycled for the lawn for irrigation. It was a fight with our builders; a lot of people don’t want change. But it’s worth it.

You can do most things for the right price, so I can’t understand the issue here, but maybe she flat out hired the wrong builder.  Lesson is, get people with experience.  Green building is high-quality building.  And Joe Dirt probably can’t do it.  Maybe we can blog about her home when she’s done?  Eva?!

Aeropoint Small Wind Turbine Pays Back in 2-7 Years!

Aeropoint1 Aeropoint2

I ran across some news that Marquiss Wind Power just raised $1.3 M in series A funding, which, in and of itself, isn’t that big of a deal to me (because funding doesn’t = anything).  That said, Marquiss Wind Power has quite the value proposition with their ducted wind turbine product called Aeropoint, a product that comes in three sizes.  It’s a small-wind turbine built for commercial buildings of 1-3 floors.  Based out of Folsom, California, the company had encouraging results with the first three test turbines.  Actually, the results were so good the company claims purchasers should have a payback period of 2-7 years.  You’ll notice that depending on a lot of different factors, a 2-7 year payback is about 2x faster than the payback for solar. 

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