Stroh Haus is a home in Switzerland made of compressed straw bale and designed by Felix Jerusalem. As you can see from the images below, the staw bale is used not only for the external walls, but also as a sound barrier insulation on the inside. What’s incredible, though, is that green tint, translucent sheeting on the exterior. Quite compelling, isn’t it? I wish I had more to say on the home, but there’s not much information, other than what I’ve seen at Architechnophilia.
Over the weekend, REI opened the doors on a brand-spanking new, LEED-CI Silver certified, green retail store in Boulder, Colorado. Designed by Gensler, this store is an extension of REI’s commitment to green building. REI’s director of store development, Dean Iwata, said, "REI’s Boulder store builds on our more than 10 years of green building experience, and helps us test concepts that will pave the way for how our stores are built in the future, including design, material selections and use of technology." I couldn’t be happier for the company — I think I’ve found a justification to splurge $165 on a new North Face Denali jacket. Vote with your money, right?!
The store has tons of green technology, such as specially-designed Solatubes (which save major deniro and energy). Also, using efficient, low-flow fixtures, the store uses 30% less water than federal code mandates. 70 percent of the store’s hot water is heated through solar energy. REI Boulder is the first retail integration of Building Integrated Photovoltaics (BIPV) and uses recycled, renewable, and low-VOC materials throughout. Plus, as many responsible builders do, REI diverted 75% of construction waste from the local landfills by using it in other areas of the store or recycling it.
The word on the street is that the three wind turbines on Bahrain World Trade Center will starting generating electricity the last week of October. As you can see from the images below, construction of the towers is moving along nicely. The turbines are expected to generate roughly 11-15% of the buildings’ energy needs, or 1100 to 1300 megawatt-hours per year. Architecturally, this building explores new territory by integrating large-scale wind turbines with the structure. I’m sure Atkins Architecture has worked out all the modeling on noise and vibration, so the world is excited to learn from this experience. Enjoy the images below.
It’s Friday, why not watch a little video? High quality video content like this is hard to find online, so I thought I would share it. A lot of people think green building is about saving energy. It is. But that’s just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. Buildings. Use. Water. Materials. Land. Space. Air. And. Money. Click on over to KQED for some background information on the above video.
Ladies and Gentlemen, it’s that time again: October 6, 2007 – The National Solar Tour. The ASES National Solar Tour is the largest tour of sustainable energy technology for buildings in the U.S. Now in its 12th year, some 100,000 people across the nation will see how neighbors are using clean sources of energy to save on energy bills and protect the environment. Through a series of open-houses and informative tours, participants learn about renewable energy options, energy efficient design, real-world costs, current rebates available, and other valuable insights.
Update 12/13/09: Platinum Lofts @ Cherokee Studios Now Complete!
There's a lot to mention with REthink Development's project called Cherokee Lofts: history, sustainability, modern design, materials innovation, etc. This Pugh + Scarpa-designed development is on track to be named the first, privately developed, LEED Gold Certified, mixed-use project in Southern California. The project will have 12 loft units, all ranging in size from 1,000 – 2,000 sf, and 2,800 sf of commercial space.