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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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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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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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[Video] Smart Features of MKD's Green Prefab @ MSI

The mkSolaire is currently the featured attraction at Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry (MSI) as part of the Smart Home: Green + Wired exhibition.  As you can tell from the above video, it’s a prefab that includes cutting-edge green materials, energy efficient systems, a living roof, and a smart technology system.  I love those rectangular, green tiles in the bathroom — check it out. 

++Smart Home: Green + Wired Debuts at MSI [JG]

Stunning Green Design of a Smart Box

Smartbox

Thanks in part to the recent launch of FreeGreen, I think I’ve found the green house of my dreams.  The home rendered above and below is called the Smart Box and it’s a stunner.  Designed by FreeGreen, Smart Box is the newest free home plan that’s going to be available from the website in the next couple weeks.  Smart Box was designed for practically any climate and can range in size from 1000 – 2200 sf.  In addition, the plans will identify do-it-yourself type opportunities so that you can find ways to do more on a tighter budget.

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Seattle to Become Testbed for Green Prefab Apartments?

Inhabit Finished

Last October we blogged about the Inhabit prefab prototype built in Washington and designed by Mithun and Hybrid.  Since then, there hasn’t been much news about the prototype, except that the initial two units are for sale right now.  Now comes news, however, based on an article in The Seattle Times, that Unico Properties is planning to bring Inhabit to market in a legit, 62-unit apartment complex that includes a few live/work spaces.  The development is planned for a site on Dexter Avenue North above Lake Union.  Unico has been quiet about the project because the land is still under contract and the permitting process has just begun.  But long and short, Seattle is on the cusp of becoming a major demonstration city for green, prefab apartments in the U.S. — fantastic news for proponents of healthy, affordable, and stylish living spaces. 

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