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Greenbuild 2007 Living Building Challenge Winners

Omegacenter

Green certifications are important, but can you imagine a world where buildings are better than the best Platinum level certification?  Can you imagine a building that lives?  A living building is self-sustaining and off-the-grid in terms of energy and water usage.  A living building goes beyond the paper requirements for certification and seeks true sustainability.  Earlier this month at Greenbuild, the Cascadia Region Green Building Council and the USGBC announced winners of the 2007 Living Building Competition.  Here are the winners:

There’s a lot of innovative information on each building, and you can click the links above to read directly about that specific project. 

Iconic Sears Tower to Get Green Renovation (S2)

Sears Tower Recently, Former President Bill Clinton announced a joint partnership of the Clinton Climate Initiative and the City of Chicago that will give the 1,450 feet tall building a green makeover.  Through the partnership, the Chicago landmark will be retrofitted, making it more cost-effective and energy efficient.  The project is part of Clinton’s message:  going green can save some green.  He said, “This is not a big bottle of castor oil we have to drink.  This is the greatest economic opportunity that our country has had to mobilize and democratize since we mobilized from World War II."  Clinton also predicts that in the next 18 months, there will be a race to build structures that produce energy instead of consuming it.  The move from energy-consuming buildings to energy-producing buildings is intended, at least in part, to wean the country of its coal addiction.  Let’s hope this momentum continues beyond 18 months, too.  Via Equity Green + Medill.

(S2) = Skyscraper Sunday, a weekly article on green skyscrapers.

Jackson Place Townhomes, Green Infill Luxury

Facade Exterior

Cascade Built recently finished construction on Jackson Place Townhomes, a two-unit, urban infill project built to LEED Silver certification (currently only registered).  As you can tell, it has that undeniable modern appeal, which is stylishly intertwined with green construction and design.  For $485,000, you could walk away with one of these 2 bedroom, 1.75 bath, 1260 sf townhomes.  Good design is a like a square footage multiplier — the better the design, the smaller your space requirements. 

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Adaptive Reuse for LEED Wis Tavern

Roof

The first Gold certified LEED-H home in Illinois is built from the renovation of an old neighborhood tavern.  The 3,800 square foot building is used by the owners as both a residence and as the offices of their company:  Smog Veil Records.  The label has adopted an "eco-friendly" set of principles, and the owners felt their home/office ought to reflect those values as well.  Daylighting, recycled materials, and efficient appliances were all part of this project.  Inside, some of the floors are made of a terrazzo made from recycled glass and chunks of old vinyl records.  (That's probably the only kind of vinyl flooring anyone should have.)

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$90 Billion or $300 Per Person [Editorial]

90billion

With the price of oil at $95 a barrel, economists estimate that U.S. households will spend an additional $90 billion on costlier gasoline.   Estimating our population at 300 million, that’s an average of $300 per person.   Between my wife and I, that means we’re giving up $600 of our economic pie to the recently increased cost of transportation, on average.

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[Video] Anatomy of a Green Renovation

If you have time, you can sit through all ten of these episodes and really soak in some excellent information.  In Dwell’s first web video series, Building Green in Harlem, the modern magazine company followed David and Alysia as they renovated a brownstone into a modern, sustainable home.  For some reason, the last and final video, Episode 10, which I’ve gone ahead and embedded above for your Friday viewing pleasure, isn’t on the Dwell website with the others.  It is on GreenStreet‘s website; GreenStreet was the design/build team for the project.  The above video shows what they were able to accomplish, and videos like this give people an idea of what can honestly be expected in a green rehab.  Here: open, light, airy, modern.

Feedreaders: click here to view if you do not see the video.



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