Last October we blogged about the Inhabit prefab prototype built in Washington and designed by Mithun and Hybrid. Since then, there hasn’t been much news about the prototype, except that the initial two units are for sale right now. Now comes news, however, based on an article in The Seattle Times, that Unico Properties is planning to bring Inhabit to market in a legit, 62-unit apartment complex that includes a few live/work spaces. The development is planned for a site on Dexter Avenue North above Lake Union. Unico has been quiet about the project because the land is still under contract and the permitting process has just begun. But long and short, Seattle is on the cusp of becoming a major demonstration city for green, prefab apartments in the U.S. — fantastic news for proponents of healthy, affordable, and stylish living spaces.
A Detroit-based group has a container project in mind for a blighted chunk of land near Wayne State University. News of the project hit the press this morning and local citizens didn’t quite know what to expect (see comments). The project is currently being called "Exceptional Green Living on Rosa Parks" and would feature containers stacked four high with windows and doors cut out into various places. In total, the 17-unit condo project would have units ranging in size from 960 – 1,920 and price from $100k – $190k. Pretty good price for a modern, green pad.
There’s a lot of talk here on Jetson Green about the (adverse) impact that architecture and materials choice can have on the environment. So it’s nice to know that housing can actually be an essential factor in combating climate change according to a new study from Smart Growth America.
While attending the recent EcoCity World Summit in San Francisco, I heard panelist Reid Ewing, research professor at the National Center for Smart Growth, discuss urban development and its (negative and positive) effect on climate change. The study, published by the Urban Land Institute, documents how key changes in land development patterns could help reduce vehicle greenhouse gas emissions.
In her Teardown Diary, Wall Street Journal columnist Nancy Keates forgoes the common practice of demolition and instead opts for "unbuilding." Usually referred to as deconstruction, unbuilding is when you disassemble an old structure piece by piece and salvage the usable parts. Ms. Keates found that the deconstruction of her home will cost about $4,000 more than straight demolition, but costs can vary project to project.
In Portland two brothers, Dustin and Garrett Moon, have been getting some serious attention for their project, The Commons — it could just be the first residence in the nation to meet the standards of the Living Building Challenge. The Living Building Challenge is about getting to something that’s truly sustainable, which is what I think the Moons are going after here. If you look at their plans, The Commons will use green tech that you might not see in other so-called green homes.
We talked about renderings and plans for the Holy Cross Project back in August last year, but it’s now becoming a reality. The first home is finished and Global Green plans to open it to the public this coming May. When finished, the entire project will have four more homes and a 18-unit apartment complex — all of it low-income and green, too. Global Green is shooting for LEED Platinum on everything and expects homes to use 75% less energy than a similar, typical building.