This is the Living Zero Home, which was commissioned by the U.S. Department of Energy and built by All American Homes. The home was on display in Chicago last weekend and will move to about fifteen other destinations throughout the year, including Louisville, Greensboro, Atlanta, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Dallas, Phoenix, and Denver, among other cities. The modern demonstration home features a Smart Living System — both an energy management and home monitoring tool — which helps owners save money and provides an alert for potential problems, such as a water pipe leak. The home includes a number of other green elements, too:
You're probably familiar with Brad Pitt's juggernaut project, Make It Right — back in December 2007, we talked about thirteen single-family designs planned for construction in the Lower 9th Ward. A number of these have been built, and the progress has been interesting to watch. In addition, Make It Right just announced fourteen new duplex designs from top international architects. The designs emphasize community, affordability, flexibility, and sustainability, and starting in mid-August, Make It Right expects to break ground on two of these. Check out a preview of all fourteen and the firms behind the designs:
On Cherry Street in Port Townsend, Washington, a confluence modern version of an ideabox prefab was installed. The 840 square-foot home has an open kitchen and living area flanked by two bedrooms / bathrooms on the ends. It sits perfectly on a small lot and the deck leads to a vegetable garden where the new homeowners will be able to live off the land, to a certain extent.
Sustainable design firm Mithun just updated their website with details of an interesting farmworker housing pilot project in Washington state. With the sponsorship of the Seattle Archidiocesan Housing Authority and a grant from Enterprise Community Partners, Mithun designed three prefabricated modules to provide a model for affordable housing for farmworkers and their families. According to Mithun, the state has tens of thousands of farmworkers who are forced to compete for scant affordable living options, and these prefab 580 square foot homes may change life for a lot of them.
Today, the Holcim Foundation honored four projects with Global Holcim Awards – a nod to projects that improve lives, reduce environmental footprints, and lead the way to a more sustainable future. I thought the “Innovation” project was quite interesting. The $50k Innovation prize went to Liz Ogbu and John Peterson of San Francisco-based Public Architecture for their design of an informal station where laborers can meet and wait for casual work. If you haven’t already seen the self-contained, off-the-grid station, check it out below:
Inspired by the likes of Dwell and the 100k House, Deezine.ca and Shift Development came together with an idea. They thought it would be interesting to have a modern, green, and affordable home designed by an entire community online. Ideas are posted online and the community can make suggestions for changes. Their idea became the Shift Home. You can see how the design has changed in the past few months, but to be clear, this home is not just a thought experiment. Shift Development breaks ground in late-May, or thereabouts.