We have a long history of building durable, efficient, and well-loved buildings.
Now we can design buildings that use dramatically less energy than standard. Our Habitat Passive House has a documented 90% reduction in heating costs as compared to similar houses built to code. Sustainable and green architecture is an extension of building well. We believe that building green is the result of a complete and comprehensive approach based on the following considerations.
From the amount of energy needed to heat our buildings to the speed of water pouring from the kitchen faucet, we strive to use environmental resources efficiently and responsibly. Energy efficiency is the most important aspect of sustainable design.
Conserve the energy you have
- Build the envelope to conserve heat
- Accurately size the heating and cooling systems
- Use heat-recovery ventilation
- Choose efficient appliances and lighting
Produce Renewable Energy
- From the sun: solar heat systems and photo-voltaic panels
- From the earth: geothermal wells for heat exchanging
- From the wind: turbines
Conserve Building Materials
- Use materials that are sustainable, certified, contain recycled content, and have low embodied energy
- Buy local (materials that travel less than 300-500 miles) and use local craftsmen
- Recycle construction waste
- Don’t build bigger than it has to be
- Reduce the use of water with low-flow fixtures, hot water recirculation, high-efficiency sprinklers, and drip irrigation
- Reduce waste of water by separating gray and black water
- Capture rainwater and store in cisterns for irrigation
Conserve the Land
- Protect and retain natural features
- Design the landscape for the place using appropriate plants and non-invasive species
- Build close to existing infrastructure like roads, sewer, and services
Site the Building Well
- Orient for the low-tech benefits of sun, wind, and view
- Shape the building to best increase these benefits
Thorough planning for day-lighting, indoor air quality, and heating and cooling results in more comfortable living spaces.
Create Healthy, Comfortable Spaces
- Ensure high-quality indoor air
- Design with daylighting in mind
- Use non-toxic materials
- Be environmentally sensitive
- Maintain consistent indoor air temperature
High-quality building materials and methods reduce maintenance costs and add aesthetic value. Built-to-last, well-thought-out designs are better able to meet the changing needs of occupants over time.
Design to last
- Use durable building materials
- Design with timeless aesthetics
- Employ field-tested construction details
Green Building Accreditation
Partner J.B. Clancy is a Certified Passive House Consultant. Passive House is the most rigorous building energy standard in the world, with the promise of reducing the heating energy consumption of buildings by 70-90% as compared with built-to-code structures. Our Habitat Passive House, designed for Habitat for Humanity, is the first modular house with Passive House certification in the United States.
A house we designed has earned the distinction of being a certified LEED for Homes house. The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED for Homes program is a rating system that promotes the design and construction of high-performance houses.
Farm Villa achieved Energy Star for New Homes status. Energy Star-qualified new houses are at least 15% more energy efficient than homes built to current building codes and meet guidelines for energy efficiency set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.