Taliesin Green Prefab Prototype Now Taking Shape

Rendering

Since mid-January, Taliesin students have been blogging on PrairieMod about their project to build a small modern home on the grounds of Taliesin West.  The students, with Dean Victor Sidy and Jennifer Siegal of OMD, designed a simple but elegant home with sustainability in mind.  At first, they were going to prefabricate the structure, but later decided to go instead with on-site, panelized construction using SIPs for the walls, roof, and floor.  Now, the exterior is certainly taking shape and the interior will be finished throughout the summer.  When done, the structure will demonstrate passive and active environmental control systems, water catchment, top-tier insulation, a gray water system, native landscaping, and a solar power system.

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GRAFT & Brad Pitt to Team Up for LEED Gold, Five Star Hotel in Dubai

Bradpitt Zabeel Properties just announced details of a new landmark hotel and leisure development for Dubai.  Although no renderings or designs are yet available, Dubai-based Zabeel Properties also confirmed the appointment of LA-based architecture firm, GRAFT, whose team of design consultants for the project will include the Hollywood actor, Brad Pitt.  Pitt’s involvement in the design for the resort demonstrates his interest in green development and architecture.   Says Brad: "Whilst acting is my career, architecture is my passion.   Selecting this development as my first major construction project has been a simple decision.   It will underpin not only my values for environmentally-friendly architecture, but also embrace my career in entertainment."

Sorry for the celebrity gossip bit, but I just couldn’t hold back!  I’m definitely interested in seeing the sustainable design for this new hotel, so we’ll have more details when they’re released. 

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AIA and USGBC Agree to Strategic Alliance in Advocacy, Education, & Research

From memorandum released May 28, 2008: In early May, AIA and USGBC’s volunteer and staff leadership met to talk about how we could work together towards advancing our common goals related to the goal of carbon neutral buildings by the year 2030 and other sustainability issues.

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Nano Vent-Skin Demonstrated in Concept Tower

Nvs_building

I was pretty impressed by Agustin Otegui’s design for Nano Vent-Skin (NVS), rendered on the building above.  NVS is a building skin that uses organic photovoltaics to capture sun and micro-wind turbines to capture wind.  Otegui envisions nano-manufacturing with bioengineered organisms as the production method for NVS, and because it’s organic, the wall provides the additional benefit of capturing CO2 from the air. 

Obviously, the concept building above would be a new design built to reap the benefits of NVS, but Otegui also thinks the skin would be perfect for making existing buildings greener. 

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Tragic Lag, Green Fast Tracking, Voices of Sprawl, Green Retailers, + Confused Offsets [WIR]

Week in Review

*WIR = Week in Review; a Saturday showcase of excellent links.

Impressive Vader Garage Rehab in Philly

Cor-ten Facade

The folks at 100k House noticed this green garage rehab that’s for sale on Craigslist.  As background, three University of Pennsylvania Master of Architecture majors agreed to forgo the traditional route of finding summer internships and decided to buy, design, and rehab a house in Philly.  The result is this stylish renovation with undeniable appeal.  My two favorite aspects of the design are (1) the Cor-Ten facade that provides both privacy from the outside and visibility from the inside, and (2) the courtyard area that separates the living room, kitchen and office, and bedroom area (it’s nice to have a buffer between the noisy tv room and sleeping areas).

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