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Design to Embed Value in a Home [Interview]

I caught up with Brian Phillips, principal of Interface Studio Architects, in Miami recently while he was down as a visiting critic at the University of Miami School of Architecture.  Based in Philadelphia, ISA is a prominent architecture and research firm on the leading edge of green building and pre-fab construction with notable projects such as the 100k House and The Modules, featured on Jetson Green a few years ago.  Here is our discussion on the work of ISA and direction of the green building industry.

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Interview with a Passive House Builder

One thing I’ve noticed is the fact that home building is changing in a big way.  In order to capture what’s going on across the country, I thought it would be interesting to talk with influencers and innovators about things like tiny houses, prefabrication, sustainable design, high performance construction, and home technology.  For this first interview, I was able to exchange emails with Sam Hagerman, co-owner of Hammer & Hand and president of the Passive House Alliance US, on the topic of ADUs and Passive Houses.

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What’s The One Green Product …

When the Museum of Science and Technology in Chicago wanted a “smart” house on their grounds to showcase energy-efficient and healthy living at its best, architect Michelle Kaufmann was a natural choice to design it.  After all, her passion for sustainability, coupled with an impeccable eye for style and plenty of award-winning projects under her belt, has made Michelle an authority on good green design.  The Smart Home: Green and Wired exhibit has inspired thousands of visitors with its perfect mix of high and low-tech green building techniques, materials and gadgets in a friendly, modern setting.

Current and recent projects for Michelle Kaufmann Studio include a sustainable neighborhood, a co-housing complex for some very with-it Franciscan nuns, and several private residences for green-minded clients.  With so much hands-on experience with many of the materials and technologies we write about here at Jetson Green, I was eager to pick Michelle’s brain.

I proposed a series of open-ended questions starting with “What is the one green product …”, hoping the busy designer would find it a fun, thought-provoking exercise.  Luckily she did — and I hope you find her responses as illuminating and insightful as I have!

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