[Run time = 26 min.] I’ve posted about LivingHomes here, here, and here. Well, Steve Glenn is the company’s CEO and Founder and he has some interesting things to say. If you’re still unsure about his green cred, he built the first LEED Platinum home in the United States (with the design help of Ray Kappe). Enjoy…
"F2" is short for "Flickr Friday," a weekly short posted on Friday with an image from Flickr and a quick description. Feel free to email me your F2 ideas.
That’s right, Platinum. LEED-H Platinum, that is. The Near-Zero Energy Home in Paterson, NJ, is quite the achievement. I first saw a picture of it in BusinessWeek, if I recall correctly. The home’s website at www.betterhomebetterplanet.com has a pretty good bank of construction and finished photos, as well as general info relating to the construction of a high-performance home. An interesting note about the Near-Zero Energy Home is that it will serve as a template for a project to build over 3,000 affordable housing units in Paterson.
Green building requires a holistic approach, where the aggregation of several energy efficient, environmentally conscious, and resource efficient pieces come together to create a home of high-performance. Here, there are three main systems (building envelope, solar power, and mechanical HVAC) that interact to create a home that’s 80% more efficient than your typical abode. Click here for a visualization of how each system works. The Near-Zero Energy Home has solar panels, solar water heating systems, cool metal roofing, Energy Star windows, insulated concrete forms (ICFs), structural insulated panels (SIPs), an Amana air conditioning system, and more…
BASF + China + McDonough?
Another interesting note relates to the future cooperation of Eco-tect William McDonough and BASF. Over the next 12 years, McDonough is charged with building seven cradle-to-cradle cities in China, housing +400 million people. Many of the technologies used in this Near-Zero Energy Home will also be used to help China achieve 65% reductions of energy use by 2020. Must be good.
Sometimes, I’m amazed at what technology can do. Recently, I read an article about Michael Klug + Michele Grieshaber’s 1926 bungalow in Austin’s historic Hyde Park, which was renovated in accordance with the Austin Green Building Program. The original home was about 1,500 sf, but after renovations and adding some space, the 2,300 sf home uses half the energy of the original. The house is part of an 8-show feature on This Old House, and you’ll be impressed to find a time-lapse video of the renovation project. The DMN article suggests that the eco-friendly additions to the renovation added a price premium of about 10%, but let’s not forget that this home is outfitted with some pretty good stuff, including photovoltaics.
Here are some of the green features: rainwater reclamation for irrigation and landscaping; spray-foam insulation for added energy efficiency; recycled glass tile and countertops by IceStone; formaldehyde-free wood composites; milled wood from deconstruction used throughout the home in various places; James Hardie fiber cement siding, which can be a good substitute for wood siding; low-flow bathroom plumbing and high-efficiency kitchen appliances; a heat-reflecting standing-seam metal roof; and an array of photovoltaic panels on the south-facing roof. Below, you’ll see pictures of the water reclamation tank and the cabinets that were made with Lyptus, a eucalyptus hybrid plant that grows fast. DMN Article + Pictures.
MGM Mirage is developing a 76 acre site between the Bellagio and Monte Carlo called CityCenter. With about 18 million square feet of new construction (residential, hotel, resort, casino, etc.), CityCenter is being dubbed a "city-within-a-city." If the project is completed according to LEED standards as planned, City Center will be the largest LEED project in the world. MGM has lined up some of the world’s best architects for the project, including Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects (61-story resort-casino), Studio Daniel Libeskind (retail + entertainment district), Kohn Pedersen Fox Architects (The Residences at Mandarin Oriental), RV Architecture LLC (Vdara Condo Hotel), Foster and Partners (The Harmon), and Helmut Jahn (The Veers). Generally speaking, some of the sustainable design benefits include eliminating 48,000 tons of GHG per year, diverting over 80% of construction waste through re-use and recycling, and having improved indoor air quality by using low-VOC and non-toxic materials.
In 2005, the Nevada Legislature created a statewide tax abatement program that allows LEED building owners to cut property taxes 35-50%. But that’s not the only reason MGM’s going green on this project. For most companies, their most expensive asset is people. Green buildings boost productivity among occupants and providing healthy, well-designed buildings is one way to create value for employees. CityCenter is slated for completion in November 2009. Via SunHerald.
::"S2" is short for "Skyscraper Sunday," a weekly article on green skyscrapers posted every Sunday::