This is a modern, concept home design by Gau Designs & Concepts, a multi disciplinary design consultancy based in Montreal, Canada. The idea of a green prefab home made of bamboo is quite compelling–that is, assuming the bamboo can be sourced locally. Depending on the species, bamboo is quick to grow. It’s also light and durable and has become popular to use in a variety of applications. The house design allows for a slightly slanted roof, which is not too slanted to preclude a green roof, but that is oriented at the right angle to generate power with a photovoltaic array.
A proposed million square foot, mixed-use development for Rosslyn Central Place in Arlington, Virginia (metropolitan DC area), recently received approvals. With construction set to begin early in 2008, the objective of this development is to create an image and identify for Arlington, as well as a sense of place in the heart of Rosslyn. This area of Rosslyn should become a hub of pedestrian activity, with various retail opportunities on the ground level. There will be two LEED certified towers: one commercial tower will have 500,000 sf of premium space and the other tower will house 350 residential units. The base of both towers will have about 50,000 sf of retail amenities. And one of the main luxuries of the development is the 10,000 sf observation deck above the commercial tower (pictured below). The observation deck will feature 360 degree views of some of the most famous locations in the country. See also Beyer Blinder Belle + WAN.
CNET and Michael Kanellos went on the scene at XtremeHomes‘ factory to walk through the process of building a modern home. The video is just over 3 minutes long and talks about the efficiencies and environmental benefits of factory-built homes. Towards the end, there’s a small portion with Michelle Kaufmann demonstrating the NanaWall; she’s having the mkLotus built right now at XtremeHomes’ factory and the home will be unveiled at West Coast Green.
I like the idea of using things that we already have to create things that we need — which is probably why the concept of container housing is so intriguing. In Las Vegas, Arnie Stalk, in conjunction with METRO Development Group and SHARE, has created an actual prototype of the Instant Built House. IBH is a rapid deployment shelter made from standardized, recycled ISO modules — containers that can be transported via ocean cargo ships, railroad "piggy-back" trains, semi-trucks, helicopter airlift operations, and civilian and military jumbo air cargo transports. In other words, an IBH can be shipped practically anywhere in the world in a moment’s notice.
IBH Shelters are built with the following: fully insulated walls, photovoltaic solar array for power, wind-ventilated scoops and skylights, roof-mounted HVAC units, satellite cable and internet, and internal waste collector and water recycling systems. IBH models are secured on concrete caisson footings, foundations, and slabs. I’m surprised they used Longhorn colors to paint it, but we’ll let that slide.
Jefferson Green, not to be confused with Jetson Green, is one of only twelve LEED-CS Gold buildings in the country. It’s also the first Gold commercial building and the largest and most energy-efficient LEED building in New Mexico. AND it’s expected to be the first commercial building in New Mexico to certify under LEED-CI (this one Gold, too). That’s a double Gold. The three-story, 85,000 sf spec office building uses 30% less water and 45% less energy than the average local office building. Designed by Dekker/Perich/Sabatini, Jefferson Green is a model for commercial buildings of the future. The design called for some of the following features: underfloor air system, operable windows, water-efficient plumbing fixtures, xeric landscaping, low-VOC interior materials and applicants, IceStone countertops, Armstrong Dune ceiling tile, 3Form resin, and Forbo Marmoleum flooring. The building received all the possible LEED points in the Indoor Environmental Quality category and almost all the possible points in the Water Efficiency category. Nice work.
Exploring issues of sustainability and energy efficiency, the TrailerWrap Project aims to provide simple, affordable solutions to improve conditions in mass-produced, low-cost mobile homes. Mobile homes are a prolific form of living, and important one, but they can be inefficient, ugly, and uncomfortable to live in. So the University of Colorado at Denver College of Architecture cooked up sketches and prototypes, a kit to transform the common mobile home. And now, that process is complete and they have the first actual TrailerWrap home. I’m completely blown away by the results.