Sustainable Ranch Renovation Keeps Mid-Century Style

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Dec 9, 2016 10:42:50 AM

Visible changes blended with hidden additions make this home sustainable from top to bottom.

Photos by Robert M. Cain, Architect

CALL IT A CASE OF AGE before beauty. When a 1950s ranch-style home just outside of downtown Atlanta began to show its years, the owners decided it was time for a “redux.” The 2,100-square-foot dwelling was completely gutted and renovated to include several sustainable features and eye-catching design work on the interior and exterior.

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Affordable, High-Performance House: Lauren Gardens

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Aug 23, 2016 1:05:37 PM

The 1,270-square-foot home includes three bedrooms and two bathrooms on one level and achieves a HERS score of 51.

Habitat for Humanity is working to provide low-income families with energy-efficient housing. South Sarasota Habitat, its affiliate in Venice, Fla., is constructing all new homes according to specifications in the DOE’s Zero Energy Ready Home program. By moving into an energy-efficient building, low-income residents can save on utility bills, improve their health and safety and see long-term affordability with lower maintenance costs, according to the DOE.

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Resilient Ranch: Spray Foam Insulation Adds Lasting Value to this HOTY Award Winner

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Feb 1, 2016 12:03:00 PM

Water, food security and land stewardship are just as important as energy independence for this Texas ranch house, a winner in this year's Green Home of the Year Awards.

FAMILY AND COMMUNITY are the focus of this ranch, creating a space where the homeowners could age in place surrounded by family, food and the Texas countryside. Nestled on 100 acres in Texas Hill Country, this artist’s compound is a colorful gem of self-sufficient living and connection with nature.

In the past few years, Texas has been plagued with drought and wildfire; the homeowners built this passive solar home in response to the changing landscape. A preliminary Wildfire Defense assessment was incorporated into the building site to minimize risk of loss.

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Fifties Homage

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Dec 19, 2014 12:57:00 PM

CORNELIA STUMPF AND CELESTINO PIRALLA DISCOVERED THEIR IDEA OF A HOUSING GEM in Magnolia Park, a suburb in Savannah, Georgia.

The couple made an offer within 45 minutes, even though many of the home’s original features were covered up or in disrepair.

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Conscious Compound

Posted by Green Builder Staff

Aug 8, 2014 6:38:57 PM

HERE'S SOMETHING you don’t see every day: an “aging in place” multiple unit housing project with sustainability front and center.

This urban project in downtown Santa Barbara, CA, takes to heart architect Ed Mazria’s 2030 Challenge goal of carbon neutrality. Built in two phases, and certified LEED-H Platinum, it began with the teardown of an 1887 Victorian house, and its replacement with a state-of-the-art 2,520-sq. ft. home. The new structure captures some of the essence of the original home, but is extremely airtight and well built. The combination of spray foam and external Tyvek ThermaWrap reduces air infiltration (ACH 50) to .96 (better than the most stringent LEED standards).

The second phase called for construction of a 5,100-sq. ft. three-unit condominium, designed in a Spanish style. This condo was built using the same framing and insulation materials as the single-family home, and it also achieves super energy efficiency. The team had intended to build both structures with SIPs, but seismic concerns resulted in a change to 2”x6” framing with spray foam and thermal wrap.

The addition of parking lifts not only allowed for more vehicles—it conserved valuable square footage for living, so that the architect was able to squeeze an additional living unit out of the plan. Less driveway also made possible communal gardens in between the buildings. Read More