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Tuin Project, House + Yard Goes Vertical

Tuinproject3

Your version of the proverbial American Dream may not include a house, dog, and white picket fence, but I’m sure it’s something like that.  But what happens to your American Dream when future development policies encourage greater density and vertical construction?  Don’t get me wrong.  Greater density is a good thing and it alleviates the harmful effects of sprawl.  But, at the same time, our vision of the American Dream becomes more and more obsolete.  Unless … you see greater density and vertical living as something similar to the above.  Designed by Reinier de Jong, MoCo Loco reports on the concept: "Tuin project is a proposal that places a typical two storey dwelling with a garden within a highrise framework in order to keep those who flee towards suburbia in search of space firmly in the city."  Why not, right?

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Crossroads, First Green Homeless Shelter

Crossroads

There’s an excellent article in NY Times on what’s believed to be the first green homeless shelter in the country.  It’s an extraordinary $11 M shelter.  Homeless shelters usually operate out of an old warehouse or derelict building, but this place, Crossroads, is different.  It’s a reality primarily as a result of the tenacity of Wendy Jackson, executive director of the East Oakland Community Project of Alameda County.  After seven long years and lots of hard work, Jackson was able to make it happen.  The newly finished, modern building accommodates 125 residents.

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Ultimate Reuse at Freitag Shop Zurich

Freitag Flagship Store

It's hard not to gawk at the images of this building.  So industrial and modern.  It's quite striking.  Built with 17 containers in 2006, this Freitag Flagship Store is probably one of the best examples of adaptive reuse that I can recall. 

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Magic Box, is this the Future of (Green) Prefab?

Magic Box Prefab

I put ‘green’ in parenthesis because the future is green, whether you, I, or anyone else likes it.  That’s where this whole thing is heading.  And several countries rely heavily on prefabrication for construction of homes and buildings.  So I ask, after looking at the photos, does this Magic Box represent what’s to come in the future?  The Magic Box is cubic and versatile and small.  It can go anywhere and be used as anything.  But is this the future of (green) prefab?

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Austin's Ronald McDonald House Going for Platinum

Pc130173

Recently, Ronald McDonald House Charities made the decision to integrate sustainable design and energy efficiency in all future facilities, whether new, expanded, or remodeled.  As you can tell with this RMHC of Austin and Central Texas, which has 30 rooms to accommodate families with ill or injured children being treated in local area hospitals, they mean business when it comes to going green.  Here, RMHC is going all the way by seeking that LEED Platinum paper.

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Economically Eco-Friendly PowerHouse

Powerhouse

PowerHouse Enterprises is persistently chasing that sweet trifecta of style, economics, and sustainability.  This house here, built in Lawrence, Massachusetts, is en route to get LEED Platinum certification.  Says Quincy Vale, founder and President of PowerHouse:  "Overall, green is good, but the things that work are health and money.  Unless homeowners save money from their investment, I'm not sure it's going to sell."  I think he's hitting it right on the head with that statement. 

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