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41 posts from April 2008

April 30, 2008

Deconstruction Grows in Popularity, Spawns New Businesses

In her Teardown Diary, Wall Street Journal columnist Nancy Keates forgoes the common practice of demolition and instead opts for "unbuilding."  Usually referred to as deconstruction, unbuilding is when you disassemble an old structure piece by piece and salvage the usable parts.  Ms. Keates found that the deconstruction of her home will cost about $4,000 more than straight demolition, but costs can vary project to project.

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Anna Sova, a Luxurious Line of Home Eco-Products

900 GSM Turkish Towels

Anna Sova is a Dallas, Texas based company offering organic bedding, towels, paints, and bath and body products.  The bedding uses materials such as eco-silk and US-grown organic cottons and usually at least a 600 thread count.  Their towels are 100% organic cotton with spa-quality, 900 gsm (grams per square meter).  This compares to conventional towels which have 300-400 gsm.  Other products include soy candles, aromatherapy, and bath and body products.  My favorite offering, however, is their paint, which is made from 99% food grade materials and is VOC free (or as close as is currently possible). 

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April 29, 2008

Green from the Ground Up [Giveaway]

Greenfromthegroundup I've just received an excellent new book, and as is the tradition here at JG, I'll be giving the book away to one random commenter.*  Published by The Taunton Press, Green from the Ground Up is incredibly thorough and more helpful than I ever imagined it would be.  I really shouldn't have been surprised, though, because one of the authors, David Johnston, has another book out on green remodeling that's very popular.  So I expect Green from the Ground Up to be just as successful. 

It has over 300 pages and 300 color images that provide a way for the reader to see that (1) green building actually works and (2) green buildings don't have to be ugly.

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Indiana Green Bank Uses Wind, Solar + Geothermal

I call dibs on this prediction: to the extent that banks can keep themselves from drowning financially, we're going to see a huge proliferation of green branches over the next five years.  The guy on the video uses the word "fad", but I think we all know it's more than that.  This branch here, First Federal Savings Bank, is located in Mishawaka, Indiana and just opened last week.  The local press gave the retail pad some pretty positive coverage, as you can tell from the images, video, and diagram.  The LEED Registered, $2.5 M branch relies on a wind turbine, solar panels, energy efficient windows, Agriboard compressed-straw panels, permeable pavers, and geothermal heating and cooling.

++A Different Green for Banks [South Bend Trib]

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2008 AIA/COTE Top 10 Green Projects Announced!

2008 AIA/COTE TOP TEN GREEN PROJECTS

Every year, the AIA Committee on the Environment (COTE) invites electronic submissions of built projects and announces ten (10) award winners.  I've included direct links to each project below -- after the links, you'll find detailed case studies and background information.  Here they are ...

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April 28, 2008

8 Chifley Square Adds Color to Green Tower Design [S2]

8 Chifley Square

Soon there could be a new, sustainable tower rising in the Sydney skyline at 8 Chifley Square.  Subject to council approval, the colorful building would seek both a six-star Green Star and five-star ABGR rating, the highest level of certification available under both systems.  With design like that, it won't surprise many that 8 Chifley is expected to use 50% less energy than a comparable Sydney CBD building.

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April 27, 2008

Sprawl Home Discounts, Big City LEED and Codes, + Future of Green Buildings [WIR]

Week in Review

*WIR = Week in Review; a Saturday showcase of excellent links.

Help Project H Design Give 100 Lifestraw Systems

Lifestraw

Last February, we mentioned Project H Design and Emily Pilloton's project to provide 50 Hippo Rollers to a community in South Africa.  They met the initial goal of 50 and ended up providing something like 75 Hippo Rollers.  Project H Design is now working towards providing over 100 Lifestraw Family systems to a community in Mumbai, India.  If you are interested in contributing to the cause, please feel free to donate at Project H Design

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April 25, 2008

Method Homes Debuts Modern, Green Prefab Design

The Method Cabin

Update 7/24/08 - The Method Cabin is now complete!

We have a new company here, Method Homes, that just announced the construction of their first prefab model, The Method Cabin.  Method Homes is targeting LEED-H Gold certification for the five-module abode, which will be about 1811 sf with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms.  I've been navigating through the blog a little bit, studying the details of this first design, and I definitely like what I see so far.  Designed by Seattle architectural firm, Balance Associates, The Method Cabin will have that trendy cantilevered roof and efficient, functional floor plans.  It will also have some nice green touches with Kliptech Ecotop countertops, Bamboo Hardwoods cabinets and flooring, and the Warmboard radiant sub floor. 

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April 24, 2008

The Commons Strives to be Nation's First Living Building Challenge Residence

Commons Project

In Portland two brothers, Dustin and Garrett Moon, have been getting some serious attention for their project, The Commons -- it could just be the first residence in the nation to meet the standards of the Living Building Challenge.  The Living Building Challenge is about getting to something that's truly sustainable, which is what I think the Moons are going after here.  If you look at their plans, The Commons will use green tech that you might not see in other so-called green homes. 

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