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Magic Box, is this the Future of (Green) Prefab?

Magic Box Prefab

I put ‘green’ in parenthesis because the future is green, whether you, I, or anyone else likes it.  That’s where this whole thing is heading.  And several countries rely heavily on prefabrication for construction of homes and buildings.  So I ask, after looking at the photos, does this Magic Box represent what’s to come in the future?  The Magic Box is cubic and versatile and small.  It can go anywhere and be used as anything.  But is this the future of (green) prefab?

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Economically Eco-Friendly PowerHouse

Powerhouse

PowerHouse Enterprises is persistently chasing that sweet trifecta of style, economics, and sustainability.  This house here, built in Lawrence, Massachusetts, is en route to get LEED Platinum certification.  Says Quincy Vale, founder and President of PowerHouse:  "Overall, green is good, but the things that work are health and money.  Unless homeowners save money from their investment, I'm not sure it's going to sell."  I think he's hitting it right on the head with that statement. 

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Shigeru Ban Creates Urban Oasis with Greenery

Swatchgroup

Just a quick little post on the new headquarters for Swatch Group Japan in the heart of Tokyo’s Ginza District.  The building was designed by Shigeru Ban and houses seven of Swatch’s luxury brands on each of the first seven floors.  Floors eight through thirteen are used as office space and the top floor as an event area.  You’ll notice the interior green wall, which, as Jean Snow describes it, has "so much greenery that you almost feel as if you’ve stepped into an urban oasis."  I think this represents another example of greenery permeating all aspects of design, both inside and out. 

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Tulane GREENbuild: Splendid Combo of Green, Prefab

Tulane Green Build Rendering

The Tulane School of Architecture Green Build program set about to research, develop, and construct an inventive and experimental prototypical house.  A green house.  Made in a factory.  Specifically for post-Katrina New Orleans.  Students first researched everything from construction processes to materials selection parameters.  Above all, access to materials, affordability, and sustainability ruled the day.  In the end, Tulane Green Build came up with a design for a 1,200 sf home with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. 

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Mashup of Modern Topiary + Living Walls

Louis Vuitton Topiade

Gas Design Group designed this overlay facade, "Topiade", for an already existing Louis Vuitton store.  I think the name "Topiade" comes from a combo of the terms topiary and facade, which is pretty creative, if you ask me.  The idea of taking wild greenery and applying design and creativity through topiary is something I’ve seen personally in both Japan and Taiwan.  It appears to be popular in France, as well.  So when applied to the vertical context, the environmentalists get excited.  We like green roofs, living walls, and natural buildings. 

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GreenMobile® Ultra-Affordable, Modular Green Homes

Greenmobile2

We featured GreenMobile® last year when we blogged about the Lifecycle Building Challenge winners.  GreenMobile® was a winner in the Professional Unbuilt category.  Now, mounting success upon success, Michael Berk, creator of the concept, has a prototype in the works to be unveiled in March 2008.  Can’t wait to see that!  GreenMobile® was awarded $5.8 M from FEMA to further develop the prototype and roughly 80 units are in the pipeline right after that prototype comes through. 

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