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Concourse E Projects, Super Modern and Green [ATL]

Weatherby1 Weatherby3

Concourse E broke ground on two super green projects last December in Atlanta that intend to move beyond LEED and into a greener realm of living.  Committed to the Architecture 2030 Challenge, Concourse E homes will consume roughly 60-90% less energy than comparable sized conventional homes.  Concourse E owner Jeff Demetriou instilled the company with the idea that a modern home is not truly modern unless it takes the environment into account.  Hence, Concourse E uses its own green building classification system called Greensphere.  The company rating system has three levels, 1-3, with 3 being the best.  Both of the projects you see below have descriptions from the website and are Greensphere 3 rated projects. 

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Portland's First SIPs House to Save 70% on Bills!

SEED SIPs House

Update: 8/7/08 – check out Seed’s blog documenting the project at www.sipshousepdx.com.

Yesterday Seed Architecture Studio and Kaya General Contractors announced plans to build the first house in Portland using structural insulated panels ("SIP").  This sustainable home design is targeted to save 70% on bills (compared to a home built to current energy code) utilizing tech such as LED and fluorescent lighting, efficient appliances, passive cooling, and the ultra efficient SIPs.  Speaking of the home, Seed Architecture Studio owner Darin Dougherty said:

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Hawaii Gateway Energy Center, a Fascinating Display of Solar Potential

HGEC

The Hawaii Gateway Energy Center (HGEC) is a 3,600 sf, $3.4 million facility situated on the south coast of Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii.  The new building serves both the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii and the Hawaii Ocean Sciences and Technology Park.  And as you may be able to gather from the images and models below, HGEC is a fascinating display of the future potential for synergies of solar power and building efficiencies.  The entire building is designed as a thermal chimney that captures heat and creates air movement using the structural form and thermodynamic principles.  Also, with the help of glazing, the building orientation and design pretty much eliminates the need for electric lighting during the day.  Notably, HGEC consumes about 20% of the energy that’s required by a comparable building. 

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Russia Tower, Largest Building in World with Natural Ventilation System [S2]

Russia Tower Russiatower5

Foster + Partners has quite the pipeline of projects and this supertall skyscraper, Russia Tower, is one of them.  Russia Tower is expected to be the tallest building in Europe, and one of the tallest in the world, coming in at a whopping 2,009 ft tall, just behind Taipei 101 and Burj Dubai.  Even further, it’ll be the largest building in the world with a natural ventilation system.  Foster + Partners designed the building with an "energy cycle" system, which is a hot water circuit that runs through the building distributing the energy to regulate temperature and heat water.  The energy cycle system is intended to chart new territory in sustainable architecture. 

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Ten Critical Steps in a Green Remodel

Green-DIY

Existing buildings have tons of embodied energy and we can’t always go bulldozing them for brand-spanking new ones.  Lots of projects need to be rehabbed and renovated, but where do we go for best practices?  I like to follow other projects for ideas, such as this one that we recently featured:  World’s First LEED Platinum Home Remodel.  The guys behind this project, after going through a major renovation of a traditional home, posted a list of the Ten Most Critical Things to Do in a Green Remodel.  They make some excellent points based on true experience, so here it is:

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Seagull Streetlamp, Micro Green Tech That Inspires

This is just another example of micro-green technology in an entirely necessary and functional setting.  The video shows a streetlight running on both wind and solar in front of Panasonic Center in Tokyo.  In addition to the helix turbine and butterfly solar panels, there’s a high-efficiency light bulb and battery for capturing energy during the day (to be used at night).  Someone tell me why we don’t see more any of this in the U.S.?  Via EcoGeek.



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