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PieceHomes Set to Premiere at Dwell on Design

Container House by PieceHomes

PieceHomes is a new modern prefab offering by Davis Studio Architecture + Design, set to debut in about a week at Dwell on Design.  Notice the interesting tagline — "pH: for a balanced home."  Nice.  PieceHomes plans to distinguish itself among the pack by providing custom and standardized, modern, modular architecture that is green and affordable.  With a variety of home designs taking shape, pieceHomes will be available this fall and manufactured by XtremeHomes.  Take a gander at the website and some of the home designs.  I’m particularly intrigued by the Container House, 3×4, and Solar Passage (all pictured in this post).  Like many prefabs, pieceHomes also will be designed to incorporate solar panels, green roofs, and other environmental features that fit home site conditions.  It’ll be nice to see some of these renderings in real life. 

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Modular Bamboo Home by Gau Designs & Concepts

Gau Designs & Concepts

This is a modern, concept home design by Gau Designs & Concepts, a multi disciplinary design consultancy based in Montreal, Canada.  The idea of a green prefab home made of bamboo is quite compelling–that is, assuming the bamboo can be sourced locally.  Depending on the species, bamboo is quick to grow.  It’s also light and durable and has become popular to use in a variety of applications.  The house design allows for a slightly slanted roof, which is not too slanted to preclude a green roof, but that is oriented at the right angle to generate power with a photovoltaic array. 

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Fat ZIP Codes, Urban Revival, Depressing Moldy Homes, Alcoa's Green Roof + Home Efficiency (WIR)

Week in Review
  • The Urban Revival – Cities may be the key to curbing climate crisis. 
  • Fat Zones – Does where you live influence what you eat?  A new study says ZIP codes are surprisingly accurate predictors of obesity. 
  • Another new study suggests that people who live in damp, moldy homes may be prone to depression. 
  • A new roof and attic system being developed at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory could help owners lower summer utility bills by 8% or more. 
  • Alcoa announced the start-up of a 588,000 watt, roof-mounted photovoltaic solar power system at its California manufacturing facility, enabling the supply of clean and reliable renewable energy. 

Instant Built House, Rapid Deployment Shelter

IBH Opening 5/31/2007

I like the idea of using things that we already have to create things that we need — which is probably why the concept of container housing is so intriguing.  In Las Vegas, Arnie Stalk, in conjunction with METRO Development Group and SHARE, has created an actual prototype of the Instant Built House.  IBH is a rapid deployment shelter made from standardized, recycled ISO modules — containers that can be transported via ocean cargo ships, railroad "piggy-back" trains, semi-trucks, helicopter airlift operations, and civilian and military jumbo air cargo transports.  In other words, an IBH can be shipped practically anywhere in the world in a moment’s notice. 

IBH Shelters are built with the following:  fully insulated walls, photovoltaic solar array for power, wind-ventilated scoops and skylights, roof-mounted HVAC units, satellite cable and internet, and internal waste collector and water recycling systems.  IBH models are secured on concrete caisson footings, foundations, and slabs.  I’m surprised they used Longhorn colors to paint it, but we’ll let that slide. :)

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Green Building Videos All in One Place!

Jetson Green Video Library

I know you could probably surf around and subscribe to a few channels here and there, but I’ve found a fun way to put the best green videos from YouTube all in one place.  Introducing the Jetson Green Video Library.  If you have the time, click the first one and it’ll take you through to the very end of all 17 videos.  And if you like a particular video, click the YouTube logo within the video and you’ll go straight to that video’s dedicated YouTube page.  Let me know if I missed one and I’ll keep the page updated with great green content.

Verdi Award-Winning Modular Landscape System

Verdi Lawnscaping System

First, it receives a 2006 red dot design award, and now, the Verdi Lawnscaping System has received a 2007 Gold IDEA Award.  Verdi is a low-maintenance, modular landscaping system that hopes to become the alternative to traditional grass lawns.  Verdi tiles are pre-seeded with built-in irrigation and they interlock for easy installation.  Once completed, the entire system can be attached to a grey water pump, which uses certain recycled water from the home to irrigate the landscaping.  The Verdi system also has other modular parts, such the solar-powered light tiles, shrub planters and path tiles, recycled glass composite inserts, and bamboo or molded recycled plastic inserts.  The technology is compelling because it has the capability to transform the process of landscape design in the backyard, terrace, or even on the roof.  And the built-in irrigation system reduces inefficient use of water, too.  This is a cool product concept to keep an eye on. 

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