Not only is this place sustainable, but rooms are small, too. With 96 units at an average size of 300 sf, Near North Apartments (NNA) is a pretty incredible habitat for people that deserve to live in a well-designed space. NNA is the creation of renowned architect Helmut Jahn, who designed the single-occupant spaces for limited income, homeless, and disabled persons. You’ll notice from the images that the building generates some power through roof-mounted wind turbines, or aeroturbines. to be precise, the building shape was conceived to maximize wind to the aeroturbines. They were invented at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and are now being marketed through Aerotecture International.
The building also uses solar thermal collectors and a rainwater reclamation system. The water system recycles shower water to flush toilets, apparently making it one of the few graywater systems in Chicago. NNA is located at 1244 North Clybourn Avenue in Chicago and is owned by Mercy Housing Lakefront group. The reason I’m blogging about this structure, in addition to being an example of small, sustainable living, is because it was listed on Metropolitan Home’s 2007 Design 100 list. Congrats.