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AIA's New Website "How Design Works" + A Modern, Sustainable House

Medora Woods Home  Medora Woods Home Top

I’m happy to report to you that I have the insider tip on a new website that the American Institute of Architects (AIA) is launching: How Design Works (http://howdesignworks.aia.org/).  The website includes information and a series of videos on the entire process of selecting an architect and going from consultation to design to build to occupation.  What I really enjoyed was the case study on Medora Woods’ sustainable home (pictured above) in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  Woods retained architect Sarah Nettleton to design a home to suit a difficult piece of land with a 28 foot falling slope from road to creek.  What Nettleton did, using the words of Frank Lloyd Wright, was build "of the hill, not on it," and designed the house to the environmental standard of the Kyoto Protocol.  Here are a few quotes of interest from the videos. 

  • There is no wasted space. 
  • Simple is sustainable. 
  • Small spaces can lead to ample lives. 
  • The house encourages me to keep simplifying my life. 

In the last video, "occupy," Woods takes you through the house and really shows off some of the sustainable features.  This new website provided by the AIA is nice tool for finding an architect, discerning the process of working with an architect, and discovering ways to incorporate sustainable building practices and energy-efficient design strategies into a plan.  Go take it for a spin. 

Study

Photos via Sarah Nettleton Architects.

LEED Silver Brickell Financial Centre (S2)

Miami_brickell_financial_centre_1 This is probably the quote of the year for a real estate developer: "I didn’t want a building that in 10 years would have to compete with all the new buildings that are LEED certified."  That’s what Loretta Cockrum, chairman and CEO of Foram Group, said in regards to her new LEED-CS Silver pre-certified project.  The $245 million, 1.5 million sf green project known as Brickell Financial Centre breaks ground in April and is set for completion in fall 2009. The first phase will consist of 600,000 square feet in a 40-story tower, the first floor for lobby and retail space and the second 11 for parking, topped by 28 floors of class-A office space. The second tower, rising 68 stories, will include retail and office space, and a 300-room hotel.  Lead architect RTKL will also have the help of Sasaki for the 30,000 square foot public plaza space, which is supposed to rival New York’s Rockefeller Plaza in scale. 

Green Features:
Like most LEED projects, there’s a slew of green features, so I’m just going to lay some of them out:  low-emissivity window glass covering to allow natural light and block solar heat; chilled water cooling system; low-flow and dual-flush toilets to cut down on potable-water use; storm water cisterns for irrigation; extensive use of low- or no-VOC paints, sealants, and adhesives throughout the building; and special storage facilities for people that bike to work.  As for construction materials, Foram Group will use materials that have a high percentage of recycled content and are sourced within a 500 mile radius. 

Extra Sources:
$245M Two-Tower Office, Hotel "Green" Project Planned in Miami [CPN]
A Fine Business Environment: Money Isn’t All that Will Be Green at Miami’s New Financial Center [Newsweek]

::"S2" is short for "Skyscraper Sunday," a weekly article on green skyscrapers posted every Sunday::

Hive Modular B-Line (F2)

B Line  Kitchen

A few months ago, I posted a video on Hive Modular.  Pictured above is the popular, modern B-Line.  Hive Modular is making it happen in a good way. 

"F2" is short for "Flickr Friday," a weekly short posted on Friday with an image from Flickr and a quick description.  Feel free to email me your F2 ideas.

Office of Mobile Design's ShowHouse (F2)

Venice_omd

I’ve blogged about Jennifer Siegal’s Office of Mobile Design (OMD) before.  What you see above is a picture of OMD’s ShowHouse, located at 1650 Abbot Kinney Blvd., Venice, California.

"F2" is short for "Flickr Friday," a weekly short posted on Friday with an image from Flickr and a quick description.  Feel free to email me your F2 ideas.

Las Vegas' $7B LEED CityCenter Project (S2)

Citycenter_las_vegas

MGM Mirage is developing a 76 acre site between the Bellagio and Monte Carlo called CityCenter.  With about 18 million square feet of new construction (residential, hotel, resort, casino, etc.), CityCenter is being dubbed a "city-within-a-city."  If the project is completed according to LEED standards as planned, City Center will be the largest LEED project in the world.  MGM has lined up some of the world’s best architects for the project, including Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects (61-story resort-casino), Studio Daniel Libeskind (retail + entertainment district), Kohn Pedersen Fox Architects (The Residences at Mandarin Oriental), RV Architecture LLC (Vdara Condo Hotel), Foster and Partners (The Harmon), and Helmut Jahn (The Veers).  Generally speaking, some of the sustainable design benefits include eliminating 48,000 tons of GHG per year, diverting over 80% of construction waste through re-use and recycling, and having improved indoor air quality by using low-VOC and non-toxic materials.   

In 2005, the Nevada Legislature created a statewide tax abatement program that allows LEED building owners to cut property taxes 35-50%.  But that’s not the only reason MGM’s going green on this project.  For most companies, their most expensive asset is people.  Green buildings boost productivity among occupants and providing healthy, well-designed buildings is one way to create value for employees.  CityCenter is slated for completion in November 2009.  Via SunHerald

Libeskind_retail

::"S2" is short for "Skyscraper Sunday," a weekly article on green skyscrapers posted every Sunday::

Rocio Romero's LV Home (F2)

Click for more information on the LV Home by Rocio Romero, which is a 1,150 square-foot prefab with a living room, dining room, kitchen, 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and closets–all starting at $33,900.

"F2" is short for "Flickr Friday," a weekly short posted on Friday with an image from Flickr and a quick description.  Feel free to email me your F2 ideas.



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