Platinum Gut Rehab Hits the Market

Recently I had the opportunity to speak with Thomas McGrath, owner of this gut-rehab in the Bucktown neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois.  Before talking, I figured the home was like many others seeking LEED Platinum certification.  It has energy-efficient appliances, modern finishes, and on-site green power.  But there’s really a lot more to it.  This is a fascinating case study of salvage and reuse.

Located at 1610 N. Honore Street, the existing home was originally built in the 1890s with a first level and basement two-flat.  McGrath, with the help of Gerhard Zinserling Architects and Act Development, Inc., added a floor, created a solar-powered garage deck, and converted everything into a single-family residence.

Early on, McGrath decided that there is no “away” — that existing elements had to be salvaged or reused.  So lumber was reused for structural and finish elements.  Lath board was reclaimed for custom desks, shelves, and tables.  Walls were moved and brick, masonry, and foundation rocks were all reincorporated into the home.

A 7.6 kW photovoltaic array powers all the electrical components, while six solar collectors provide for about 60% of the heating needs.  Other green aspects include Serious Materials fiberglass windows, Kohler WaterSense toilets, Eco Deco low-VOC paints, Arclinea kitchen cabinets, FSC-certified lumber, and LED and CFL lighting.

The 3,700 square-foot home has four bedrooms, three-and-a-half bathrooms, and a two car garage.  If you’re interested, the owner put it on the market for $2,499,000 through Prudential Rubloff Properties.

Credits: Thomas McGrath.


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  • http://bruteforcecollaborative.wordpress.com/ bruteforcecollaborative

    hey, only six times the average sale price for bucktown last year!

    • JonathanCharak

      But the ‘average’ unit in Bucktown is 900-1200 square feet. So that means this place is the size of 3 to 4 ‘average’ units.

      Then take into account that this is full of top of the line environmentally friendly finishes and LEED AP Platinum (saves money on energy). It was redone by a good architecture firm. This probably means all the issues you get with your standard 100+ year old
      building have been fixed.

      Is this a cheap place, no. But if you want a big house that is LEED AP, really close to public transit, and in an area that has great restaurants, shops and bars its a great place.

      • http://www.jetsongreen.com Preston

        Just to clarify, a person is a LEED AP, while a building is LEED registered or certified.

        • JonathanCharak

          good point… I should know that as my wife is LEAD AP

  • http://squallco.tumblr.com/ Kevin

    Great looking house.

  • Al

    Talk about GREEN WASHING!!!!

    Typical LEED propaganda!

    3700sqft single family home will never ever be “green” or sustainable. I

  • Emerson1899

    They should’ve kept it as (2) 1875 s.f. flats — even that is probably more space than a family of 3 really needs.

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