Northbrook's First LEED Home – Permit Rebate

Northbrook LEED homeThis article republished from patch.com

As the first planned green home in Northbrook, the 4,500-square-foot, 2-story, 4-bedroom house will take advantage of the land’s orientation and unique flood, solar, and energy conservation characteristics. The home’s owner and general contractor is Ihab Riad, owner of Green Park Construction, a builder of luxury custom homes. As the first LEED-certified home in Northbrook, Mr. Riad expects to receive a rebate for the building permit fee, given Northbrook’s green building incentive program.  Read more

Helenowski Net Zero home in Chicago

Helenowski LEED Platinum Gut Rehab showcases urban zero energy

Chicago’s Yannell residence has gained a lot of notoriety as the first “net-zero” home in the city – capable of producing as much energy as it consumes. Yet another home on Chicago’s far northwest side, the Helenowski Residence, has joined the prestigious ranks of ultra-green LEED Platinum homes. In fact, it’s one of the highest overall point totals ever achieved for a LEED-certified home.

Helenowski Residence - Chicago Net-Zero LEED Platinum Home

Net-Zero LEED Platinum Home – Zukas Photography

This incredibly energy-efficient home was actually a gut-rehab of Helenowski Residence Scorecard a 1950’s brick split-level home, with a major addition, resulting in 3,300 total square feet. The owner has done an incredible amount of work focusing on the Materials and Resources as well as Energy and Atmosphere areas of the home. Some of the sample strategies include:

  • All drywall was recycled-content (for a $1 per sheet premium)
  • Salvaged douglas fir from 1800’s fire-damaged building for ceiling
  • Reuse or salvage for all new interior framing members
  • Diversion of +90% construction debris
  • Reclaimed copper for roofing and gutters
The home also has some exemplary energy characteristics that helped achieve a remarkable HERS score of 13, meaning the home uses 87% less energy than a new home built to code.
The remarkable energy performance was achieved by using soy-based spray foam insulation and a meticulous attention to air sealing in the project. The technical data is quite impressive. The blower door testing gave a result of 604 CFM at 50 Pascals.  With an estimated volume of 37,725 cubic feet of volume in the house, the air changes per hour at 50 Pa was 1.02, and the air changes per hour at natural pressure is .07. In other words, the home is very tight.
Other strategies contributing to the home’s energy performance include:
  • Triple-paned Pella windows with FSC-certified lumber.
  • Geothermal ground source heat pump for HVAC.
  • Solar photovoltaic panels and a vertical-axis wind turbine to generate electricity.
  • Motorized blinds control solar heat gain on west-facing (front) windows.
  • Extremely efficient cold-cathode lighting, up to six times more efficient than LEDs.
  • Roof is partially reflective white and part vegetative green roof.
The is truly a remarkable addition to the Chicago area’s growing green building inventory and offers many lessons for other builders in the area.  Detailed strategies with photos are available at the project’s web site, www.leedhomeliving.com, as well as by downloading the 1-page PDF Helenowski Project Profile that has assembled.
Download the 1-page PDF Helenowski Project Profile

Net-Zero Affordable Homes Come to Illinois

32 three-bedroom homes to lease for $590/month in Jerseyville, IL
Solar panels, wind turbines to cut utility bill to $0; LEED Platinum preliminary rating

The long-awaited promise of affordable, net-zero, green living will finally become reality in a St. Louis suburban cornfield in southern Illinois, where 32 single-family homes will be rented for $590 per month. Solar panels, wind turbines and other technology will reduce the utility bills to $0. The homes are expected to be LEED Platinum certified at completion, with as the LEED for Homes Provider.

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New LEED for Homes Pre-approved ID Point

LEED for Homes project teams that sign up for USGBC’s Building Performance Partnership (BPP) are now eligible to earn an optional point in Innovation and Design (ID) point for Utility Tracking, which will be done via EarthAid.net.LEED for Homes BPP

For the residential market, providing performance data for energy and water usage after occupancy is not required as in other Read more

Affordable LEED Home to be Built in Rockford

The first residential LEED project within the City of Rockford, Illinois is now underway and being constructed by Comprehensive Community Solutions, Inc. (CCS).

Rockford's Affordable LEED Home

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Hyacinth Place receives LEED for Homes Gold certifications

Illinois LEED for Homes recently got a big boost when the 11 townhomes built by Brinshore Development in Highland Park received their LEED Gold certifications.  The best part is, the affordable housing project captured regional and national attention for its ability to be replicated in other communities. Read more