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A Bold Green Turbine-Powered Chicago

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One hundred years ago, in 1909, architect Daniel Burnham and Edward Bennett completed a document called the “Plan of Chicago,” which, to use the words of The New Yorker, “determined the shape of modern Chicago.”  Now, in an effort to build upon the work of Burnham and plan for the next 100 years, Big. Bold. Visionary: Chicago Considers the Next Century presents the work of nearly three dozen architects and planners with a vision for the windy city.

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An Efficient Coolerado in the Wild

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About two days after hearing that Coolerado had won the Western Cooling Challenge for the hybrid commercial version of this technology, I saw this on a newly built home.  This is what appears to be the M50 Coolerado.  Coolerado says they have the most efficient air conditioning system made — it uses up to 90% less electricity than a traditional air conditioner, depending on the humidity and elevation above sea level.  High and dry works best; see how:

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Austin’s Solar SunFlower Electric Garden

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Every now and then, you see something just knocks your socks off.  It’s either beautiful or creative or cutting-edge or all three.  And that’s what happened when I read about these solar SunFlowers created by Mags Harries and Lajos Héder for Catellus Development Company in Austin, Texas.  The permanent public art display was switched on in July and features 15 SunFlowers – photovoltaic solar collector panels on welded steel frames and stems. 

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Portland's First Rooftop Wind Turbines

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Over the weekend, Hoffman Construction lifted four Southwest Windpower turbines into place on top of a new building, Twelve West.  Located at Southwest 12th Avenue and Washington Street, Twelve West includes a mixture of office and apartment spaces and was designed by Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Architects to achieve LEED Platinum certification.  ZGF included the turbines in early renderings, and developer Gerding Edlen, probably the foremost green developer on the West Coast, determined to give the turbines serious chance.

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Shower Green with an Oxygenics Storm

Oxygenics-storm

Oxygenics was kind enough to send us their new STORM showerhead, which was designed to provide 20%-70% water and energy savings.  The unit has 54 spray nozzles that shower you with 30% more water pressure compared to other brands.  They do this with their Pressure Boosting Technology (see below), which squeezes the stream of water while adding air to it. 

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A Distinctive Greenscreen In the Wild

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We've mentioned Arizona State University's green School of Sustainability, and we've also mentioned greenscreen modular trellis panels, but we're going to bring it all full circle here in one article.  ASU used greenscreen green walls in the renovation of this 1960s building to add a little something extra — to cool the interior, clean the air, and bolster the design.  A wall was removed to add this distinctive element, and the strategy seems to be working. 

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