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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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EcoLogic Lofts Winds Up Green Chicago

EcoLogic Lofts

This is the initial rendering for a project called EcoLogic Lofts in the Bucktown neighborhood of Chicago, a project that developers plan to break ground on in early 2009.  Shooting for LEED Silver certification, the 7-story, 94-unit condo building will source two percent of its power from rooftop wind turbines that look like those made by Aerotecture International (and which are also on Near North Apartments).  Located at Bucktown, Lakeview and Lincoln Park, EcoLogic Lofts will have one and two bedroom units with prices ranging from $239k – $499k. 

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Solyndra’s Totally Tubular Solar Cells

Solyndra

Solyndra just released new details of their proprietary solar technology printed with a copper, indium, gallium, and selenium (CIGS) mixture on glass tubes.  Solyndra also announced over $1.2 billion in orders and a successful installation using the cylindrical solar tubes on the roof of their corporate headquarters.  With the glass tube design and easy installation, the company expects to provide commercial customers with higher electricity output per rooftop and significantly reduced installation costs.

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Air Breeze Off-Grid Wind Turbine Improves Upon Popular Air-X

Air Breeze by Southwest Windpower

If you’ve heard of the popular Skystream 3.7 by Southwest Windpower, then you’re probably familiar with their smaller wind turbine called Air-X.  Air-X was introduced in ~2001 and flew off shelves, selling over 100,000 units.  Building on the success of Air-X, Southwest Windpower recently released Air Breeze, its next iteration of the successful small wind generator.  I first noticed an ad for Air Breeze in Natural Home Magazine last September and have since seen news of it popping up everywhere.  Air Breeze was engineered to be quieter, more efficient, and more effective at lower wind speeds …

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Chipotle Green Restaurant Uses On-site Wind Power

Chipotle Wind Turbine

How good would a chicken (or veggie, if that’s your style) burrito bowl taste, knowing that it’s been cooked by the power of on-site green energy?  I haven’t tried one yet, but I can only imagine … Chipotle Mexican Grill will be opening a green restaurant in Gurnee, Illinois, which restaurant features a prominent six-kilowatt wind turbine.  Although mostly a symbol for the company’s efforts to create more environmentally friendly store designs, the turbine will generate ~10% of the store’s power.  The Gurnee Chipotle will have some of the following green features:

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