This is the Ross Street House in Madison, Wisconsin. It's located just a mile from the University of Wisconsin campus and the first LEED Platinum home in the entire state! I first noticed the home in an article on Cadalyst, where author Kenneth Wong discussed the use of ArchiCad software to model the home and neighboring properties for context. Owner Carol Richard, partner in the Atlanta firm of Richard Wittschiebe Hand, also used modeling to optimize the amount of natural light brought into the home.
The front of the house faces south and was designed to capture as much winter sun as possible, while still providing shade in the summer. Fixed sun louvers allow the sun to enter the home and shade the same windows in the summer.
While the Ross Street House is about 2,700 square feet, about 1,700 of that is above grade. Richard used a dark color exterior to make the home appear smaller, and used lighter colors on the inside to make it feel more open.
According to Cadalyst, the Ross Street House is very energy efficient. A typical home of this size would spend about $135 to $405 per month on electricity and gas. Here, the Platinum home costs an average of $44.21 per month for electricity and gas.
It's also powered in part by rooftop photovoltaics. Richard designed the home to use very little water. On the outside, there's a 550-gallon rainwater collection tank, and on the inside, the home has low-flow faucets, showerheads, and dual-flush toilets. The plantings are drought-resistent and a portion of the hardscape is permeable. Learn more about the house on the owner's blog:
Photo credits: Ross Street House.