In an innovative move, the Town of Babylon has set up an extensive program to work with citizens to pay for energy efficiency upgrades for every home in the town. The basic premise of the program is that the town wants to help residents use less energy, so here’s what they plan to do. They’re going to loan up to $12,000 at the super low interest rate of 3% to pay directly for renovation costs. Under the program, residents get home energy audits that include recommended actions for renovations, including adding more insulation, changing out the HVAC system, etc. The town pays for the renovations and the homeowner then makes payments to the town based roughly on the reduction in payments caused by having a more efficient home. So it’s quite the innovative system.
Starting at 10:00 am this Saturday, June 14, a custom-made Sunset Breezehouse designed by MKD will be open to the public in Santa Barbara, California. The open house will happen in conjunction with the Built Green Santa Barbara Expo, Conference, & Tour, but if you’re not able to attend, Michelle Kaufmann has been posting photos and details of the home for the past couple weeks. The home, in addition to having all the various green materials and products typically used in MKD homes, has a PV solar array and sustainable landscape design that fits the home just perfectly.
Back in September 2007, Rice Design Alliance and the Houston Chapter of the AIA announced the 99k House Competition. The general goal of the competition was to create an innovative design for a small house that is affordable, sustainable, and energy efficient. More specifically, the competition called for a single family house with up to 1,400 sf of space, including 3 bedrooms, 1.5-2 bathrooms, on a 50′ x 100′ site in a historic neighborhood of Houston. The construction budget for each home had to be under $99,000, too.
And recently, Hybrid / ORA out of Seattle was declared the winner of the competition (pictured above). In addition, four other finalists each took $5k in prize money and had their home designs published for all to see. Make sure to check out their ideas and download their designs below.
HOM Escape in Style made its debut at Dwell on Design this weekend and drew a considerable crowd. Apartment Therapy said HOM was their favorite home on display, and Curbed liked its interior design. Of the three models that HOM plans for production, the (smaller) 1000 sf design was exhibited throughout the weekend in LA. HOM designs cost in the $200 psf range, which calculates to approximately $200,000 for a 1000 sf house.
This is a Flatpak house in Aspen, Colorado. I stumbled upon these shots in Flickr, so I don’t have much background on the project. But we’ve featured a modern Flatpak home before in the Goodwin-Wise Flatpak. Flatpak houses each have their own particular and interesting features, but the Flatpak system is the same. It’s a menu of components for living that includes walls, cabinets, bathrooms, kitchen, and various built-ins. The components are fabricated and designed to meet the needs of the site and owner.
Wentworth Commons is a 51-unit, 65,800 sf affordable housing complex in Chicago’s Roseland neighborhood. As a home for at-risk and formerly homeless families and individuals, Wentworth Commons has been recognized for its trendy aesthetics and functional green design. The $13 million project has a slew of green features, including a 33 kWh PV system that provides 25% of the building’s power, a hyper efficient mechanical system, extensive use of locally sourced materials and rapidly renewable materials, and native plantings and bio-swale to reduce storm water runoff.