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Method Homes Intros S-M-L Prefab Series

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About a year ago, we first brought you news of Method Homes and their plan to build a prefab cabin in Glacier, Washington.  And they built the inaugural Method Cabin in about three months.  Now, Method Homes, in collaboration with Balance Architects, is officially launching the Balance S-M-L Series of prefab designs with three main models: small, medium, and large.  Of note, these prefab models have been designed to arrive 95% complete within three months of purchase.  The models range in size from 540 to 856 square feet, and in price from $98,000 to $148,000. 

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Zero Electricity Modern Lake House

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Here's another fascinating home by ZeroEnergy Design (see previously covered Truro Residence).  It'scurrently under construction, with foundation, framing, and sheathing complete — the rest is on schedule for completion in Fall 2009.  The 2300 square foot home features three bedrooms, two and a half bathrooms, and a combination yoga studio/art room for the owners.  The lakefront home features strategically placed windows that both provide a view of water and take advantage of passive solar heating and lighting.  Some of the other planned green features include:

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Glassy Greenhouse in Belgium

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Wow, isn't this home striking?  It's a green house and a house meant to act like a true greenhouse — the steel-framed structure is enveloped in alternating layers of insulated transparent glass and translucent polycarbonate plates, so when the sun comes through the glass and heats up the interior, the insulation in the glass keeps the heat inside.  The insulation and translucent materials also provide a level of privacy, particularly on the first level, whereas the glass is featured prominently in the more public areas of the home. 

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Chinatrust Bank Complex Features Modern Buildings with Green Roofs

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If you've ever been to Taiwan, you'll probably agree that this design for Chinatrust Bank's headquarters is spot on for the region.  Taiwan is so lush and green — the extensive allowance for green roofs, vertical courtyards, and open space in the central plaza likely blends right in to the terrain.  Designed by the LA office of NBBJ, with the assistance of local firm Fei & Cheng Associates, the development includes a 30-story headquarters building, 21-story commercial office building, 10-story hotel, and four-level retail center.  The development just broke ground earlier this month and will end up with 2.5 million square feet by about 2012. 

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Project Green: an Innovative Mixed-Use Infrastructure Concept

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With all the recent discussion about crumbling infrastructure and stimulus spending, it seems appropriate to talk about a design proposal that is actively addressing many issues that are showing progress across the country.  Project Green, slated for downtown Austin, Texas, represents a comprehensive approach to sustainability in the context of an urban, mixed-use development.  In addition to incorporating the usual features like solar panels and wind turbines, this proposal takes a serious approach to handling the most precious resource on earth.  Water.  

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Casa 100k Green Prefab Homes [Italy]

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It looks like the 100k House idea has migrated overseas because a similar prototype just popped up in Italy last year.  Mario Cucinella Architects has conceived Casa 100k, which is a prototype home for Є100,000 that prioritizes three main elements: style, sustainability, and affordability.  It's billed as a low-cost, dream home with zero bills and zero emissions.  And as you can see from available renderings, the method of accomplishing such goals is primarily through prefabrication and passive and active design strategies. 

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