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Smart Tech Helps NY Times Building Cut Lighting Costs Dramatically!

NY Times Building

Last summer, it was the ceramic rod curtain wall.  Now, it’s the lighting system.  Various green aspects of the New York Times Building continue to make high profile news and it’s only been a year since the modern building opened.  Here’s the deal: The Times Company installed Lutron’s Quantum solution, a total light management system that includes daylight, occupant, target set point, time clock, and emergency lighting controls.  Although the building was originally designed to use approximately 1.28 watts per sf of lighting power, with the Lutron technology, it’s actually using only 0.38 watts per sf of lighting power — a 70% reduction in lighting use.  That means, based on New York City electric rates, they’re saving ~$315,500 and preventing the emission of 1,250 metric tons of CO2 annually.  These are some serious numbers.  Here’s where they recognized the most in terms of lighting energy savings:

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Verdier Upgrades Solar Eco-Camper

Verdier

Over a year ago, we mentioned Verdier Van & Camper’s Eco-Camper, the posh recreational throwback to VW’s Westfalia, and it looks like the Solar Power Eco-Camper has a new look.  Verdier now offers five different personalities of the award-winning vehicle: Woody, Geeky, Ebony, Blueberry, and Purity.  The eco-camper configuration is an add-on package available in any personality and entails solar panels, hybrid engine, Sun Tracker system, two gazebos, a second floor area, sliding door with integrated ladder, folding furniture, cargo storage, etc.  The price?  $129,000. 

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The Union Modern Solar-Powered Lofts

Theunion

This is The Union by architect and developer Jonathan Segal Architect.  The project gets its name from its prior life as the union hall for San Diego’s textile manufacturing business.  When the textile union moved away, the building fell into disrepair, and rather than demolish it, Jonathan Segal decided to adaptively reuse the structure to create sustainable live/work units and his own architectural office.  The Union now includes additional buildings that, in total, comprise 13 residential loft units, of which some are market-rate and some are affordable.  Also, the rooftop solar panels provide ~50% of the units’ energy needs.

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Green Trailer Maxes Out Sustainability

McCownGordon Construction Green Trailer

This is the McCownGordon Construction Green Trailer.  Pretty nice, right?!  It was designed to use a fraction of the energy typically used by jobsite trailers and still provides a modern user experience on the inside.

The interesting thing about this trailer is that it was designed using Autodesk Revit to get everything just right: the panels were placed at the best angle to capture energy and clear overpasses, the composting toilet was modeled to show exterior vents, and the interior was modeled to perfect the wood patterns and overall design.  Plus, according to Brad Hardin, BIM Director for the company, this jobsite trailer is positive energy!

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13 Innovative Green Building Designs, Lifecycle Building Challenge Winners!

Spoor House

Yesterday the EPA announced winners of the second annual green building competition known as the Lifecycle Building Challenge, or LBC2.  The challege issued a proposal for designs and ideas that support cost-effective disassembly and that anticipate future use of building materials.  It was open to architects, reuse experts, engineers, designers, planners, contractors, builders, educators, environmental advocates, and students in three main categories: (1) Building, (2) Innovation, and (3) Outstanding Achievement Awards.  The winners have been selected and listed below with a quick image.  There’s seriously some excellent thinking at work here, so congratulations to everyone …

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Off-Grid Emergency Response Studio

ERS South

I’m completely fascinated by this Emergency Response Studio.  The gist is that Paul Villinski created a solar-powered, mobile artist’s studio from an old FEMA-style trailer — it’s off-grid, sustainable, and an excellent example of eco-reuse.  But there’s more.  According to an article in the LA Times, apparently Villinski tried to buy one of the 143,123 FEMA trailers purchased by the government in the aftermath of Katrina, that is, until the government stopped selling them and began buying them back due to formaldehyde fumes from glues used to secure rugs, plywood, and other fixtures.  So he bought this one for $5,015 from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife through a GAO auction.  And after getting rid of the nesting rodents, he cleaned it up and pimped it out for an exhibit called Prospect .1 New Orleans starting early November 2008. 

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