A lot of people in Pennsylvania have been talking about green building, but according to my quick research, no one in the state has received the USGBC's highest certification under the LEED for Homes program yet.  But that could change if the stars align for Thin Flats — the developer is seeking LEED-H Platinum for all residences and waiting on Energy Star certification.  Thin Flats includes eight, market-rate, up-down units split between four rows.  The newly completed project recently received case study treatment by GreenSource Magazine, and from what I've read, observers either love or hate the exterior facade.  Personally, I like it, but what do you think?


The development is expected to use 60% less energy, 50% less water, and divert 60% of construction waste from landfills.  In addition, rooftop solar thermal provides all the hot water for the units, and the entire place is coiled with efficient radiant floor heating.  Some other green features of Thin Flats include:

  • Green roofs and access for top four units
  • Rainwater cistern for landscaping use
  • FSC certified White Tiger hardwood floors
  • Low flow fixtures and Caroma dual-flush toilets
  • Low E, double pane, efficient windows
  • Concrete with 25% fly ash
  • Mostly Energy Star appliances
  • Abundant interior natural light
  • Heat recovery ventilation system
  • Homeowners manual explaining green features

According to GreenSource Magazine, Thin Flats was completed at a cost of $3.4 million.  Prices start at $549,900.  The project is located in the Northern Liberties neighborhood of Philadelphia and was designed by Plumbob, LLC; built by JIG Inc; and developed by Onion Flats.






Photo credits: © Mariko Reed Architectural Photography (facade & green roof only); rest of the images credit: Onion Flats.