Here’s a cool renovation project recently featured on NBC’s Today Show in the sub-$250,000 spotlight. Originally built in the 1950s, the home was redesigned by The Ranch Mine, one of the firms behind the NAHB’s Green Remodel of the Year last year, and is located historic North Encanto area in central Phoenix. The exterior has bold, yellow accents mixed with a low-maintenance and low-water desert landscape, and the interior is finished with existing saltillo tile, contemporary white and grey paint, and an open layout.
This is a floating home that is entirely self-sufficient and docked in Maastricht, Netherlands. Designed by Pieter Kromwijk and referred to as Autarkhome, the solar-powered project was built to the Passivhaus standard and is 10 times more energy efficient than the average dwelling of similar size.
Turns out the Rhône Alpes team from France with the Canopea house won Solar Decathlon Europe held in Madrid. Their home is actually the top of a conceptual “Nanotower” that the team proposed to bring single-family style living back to the urban core. The top level acts like a rain forest’s canopy — hence the name — by collecting 95% of all solar energy and 30% of rainwater for the tower. Canopea was built of a prefab CORE, site-built SKIN, and a SHELL capable of off-site fabrication as well.