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Game-Changing Design

Posted by Juliet Grable

Nov 23, 2015 2:15:52 PM

Will the cookie-cutter McMansion give way to homes that are powered by renewable energy, reflect the environment and restore sites?

As important as energy efficiency is, it’s only one component of truly sustainable design. But other concerns are converging to drive a more holistic approach. Indoor air quality is one; resource conservation is another. Water is drawing up alongside energy as an urgent issue, as people are (finally) making the connection between water and energy use. Droughts in Texas and California are prompting change and opening up opportunities for graywater recycling, and demonstration homes that feature comprehensive water conservation alongside net-zero energy strategies are starting to trend. Onsite water harvesting and appropriate landscaping, including trends toward urban gardening and even animal husbandry—are becoming part of an integrated strategy that followers of permaculture have been promoting for decades.

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Topics: energy efficiency, renewable energy, design, Building Science, net zero

Designed for Flexibility

Posted by Green Builder Staff

May 26, 2015 2:52:56 PM

For this Portland, Oregon makeover, creating the perfect kitchen meant energy-efficient, customized design—with minimal waste.


THE KEY TO FITTING the perfect kitchen into this small 1940s home was flexibility, says Therese DuBravac, design consultant at Neil Kelly Design.

The original kitchen was a very tight space, but the 40-something chef-and-teacher couple has no children and plans to live in the house for the long term.

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Topics: Indoor Air Quality, kitchen, energy efficiency, Kohler, Green Appliances, appliances

Enduring Appeal

Posted by Sarah Lozanova

Nov 7, 2014 2:08:46 PM

PIONEERS IN THE Nebraska Sandhills lacked trees and even good sod for home construction, so they used the material they had widely available: straw bales. A revival of this building method is underway, with homebuilders seeking the desirable qualities of these highly insulated, attractive and renewable homes.

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Topics: straw bale, energy efficiency

Streamlined Green

Posted by Sarah Lozanova

Nov 3, 2014 3:12:07 PM

WHEN RICKY CAPPE, a green building consultant, wanted to build a home on a modest budget, he started wondering how someone could build an affordable sustainable home. He found it impractical for each homebuilder to hire an architect and research the myriad of options on the market. He found the process very time consuming and expensive, which inspired him to create sustainable, affordable kit houses.

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Topics: SIPs, natural daylighting, energy efficiency, FSC Certified Lumber

The Log Home, Redux

Posted by Sarah Lozanova

Oct 22, 2014 2:17:00 PM

ARBORWALL BRINGS LONG-LASTING, energy-efficient log homes with a contemporary look to the custom-built home market. Based in northern Maine, the company pairs solid log construction with a state-of-the-art precision custom manufacturing process that avoids human error and saves time on the construction site. Read More

Topics: energy efficiency, Resilient Housing

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