Innovative solutions for creating healthy, efficient, eco-friendly homes

October 2007

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Building better coastal homes

Coastal building is undergoing a dynamic change, one that can be seen in a residential community recently established in a hurricane-prone region. Audubon Village is a master-planned coastal community on Bolivar Peninsula, a 27-mile-long barrier island on the Texas Gulf Coast north of Galveston. At its widest point, Bolivar Peninsula is only three miles across, which means homes there are particularly susceptible to damage from severe weather.

High-Performance High-Rises

As the sustainability movement continues forward, many construction projects of different types are starting to become more focused on greenbuilding. I'm receiving calls from developers I've never heard of on a daily basis, asking how they can make their projects more sustainable or even LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified. Why is this happening?

How Low Can You Go?

During the summer months, many smart homeowners turn their thoughts from indoor to outdoor home improvement projects. But outdoor ventures like new lawns, landscaping and gardening can be among the biggest water-wasters around.Water is an important resource that needs to be used more efficiently or even reused to contribute to the overall high performance of a home.

Green on a Budget

A green, energy-efficient home doesn't have to be expensive. That's the lesson behind a new home that has recently been completed in the Virginia mountain city of Roanoke.Back in 2005, an international competition was held to find a home design that best followed the principles set out by the cradle to cradle philosophy, as envisioned by architect William McDonough and German chemist Michael Braungart.

Extending the Outdoor Season

Not so long ago, outdoor living spaces rarely received much attention from homeowners, and usually were sparsely furnished with less-than-attractive items - a white metal table, simple aluminum-framed deck chairs with nylon webbing, a kettle-like grill and perhaps a patio umbrella.

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