The purpose of this project was to update a 1913 Federal meets Prairie style home in Minnesota. The home suffered from poor flow and a lack of bedrooms and bathrooms. The kitchen had been remodeled in the 80’s to an all-white melamine which didn’t match anything in the house and was cramped and confining.
The homeowner wanted to be respectful of the original architecture and period of the home while adding some personal elements to the home. Design that accommodated both family living and gatherings of friends was a requirement.
An addition was placed on the back of the home on both floors to resolve the home’s many flow issues. It houses the new library, kitchen, bedroom, and yoga-room. It is now possible to circumambulate the home on both floors which greatly enhances the rhythm of the space both on the interior and the exterior.
A new metal roof, sand-float finish traditional stucco, rain-barrels, and extensive landscaping make the exterior of this home as classy as the interior. The lines of the addition greatly enhance the architecture of the home and the lines of the patio create natural flow around the home.
The home is now heated with a geothermal system, captures 40% of the stormwater from the roof for use in irrigation, and achieves a 95+% stormwater retention on site. Plantings are all drought tolerant or native, and the grass is a no-mow blend that needs little to no irrigation or mowing. All of the finishes were low or no VOC. Furnishings and fabrics are made from 100% organic or 100% recycled materials and are low VOC. Furniture is made using FSC certified wood, and many materials including doors, countertops, flooring, millwork and the entire patio were made from salvaged materials.
From the Homeowner:
“Changes to the plans were made relatively late in the process, but [the remodeler] and his team did a fantastic job rolling with the changes.”
“Finally, I want to say that I cannot think of one [of the remodeler’s] employee or one contractor that worked on my house that didn’t do a great job and wasn’t pleasant. And I was there a lot. Good character and trust are extremely important to me, and I trusted and liked everyone that I came in contact with. Frankly, that was a very nice surprise.”
By Michael Anschel, Otogawa-Anschel Design-Build
For more information on this project visit www.otogawa-anschel.com.
This 1960 rambler nestled along West River Parkway in the Seward neighborhood of Minneapolis, possessed owners who were dedicated to both the concept and the spirit of sustainable and healthy construction. The impetus for their project was to provide better living space for themselves and their two daughters by adding a second floor. The new level houses two bedrooms, a common bathroom and a laundry room.
When Buck Brothers Construction broached the idea of attaining GreenStar certification, the home owners enthusiastically signed on. From beginning planning through the construction phases a collaborative process was put into play to ensure that all the participants (designers, contractors, suppliers and homeowners) “owned” the goal of creating a highly livable, energy efficient addition.
During demolition the roof framing was salvaged and re-sawn to create the railings for the new staircase. A dozen re-claimed doors were installed in doorways by the carpenters and as a unique closet partitioning system by the homeowner. Trees harvested from the neighborhood were transformed into beautiful flooring and cabinetry by a local company, Wood From the Hood. A new high-efficiency furnace and air-to-air exchanger, coupled with super tight construction standards put a lid on energy costs while raising indoor air quality. Water conservation was achieved by installing low-flow toilets, water restrictors on faucets – and rain barrels to feed the xeriscape garden. Even the dumpster service played a part, by recycling over 66% of the construction debris.
The best testament to the success of the project, and the enduring quality of the relationships, is that the clients have contracted for another remodeling project with the same quest for “green” practices and certification!
By Bob Buck, Buck Brothers Construction Inc.
For more information on this project visit www.buck-bros.com.
For more information on this project visit www.building-arts.net.
Eian Residence — Minneapolis, MN
This neglected and partially obsolete 1927 Minneapolis home was in desperate need of repairs and updates. Not only was it lacking a design identity—all trim and period details had been yanked—but its performance (comfort and energy bills) was extremely poor as well. Homeowner and German-born architectural engineer Tim Delhey Eian used a holistic approach pioneered locally by TE Studio to address both shortcomings and bring his family home into the 21st century.
The house features around 2,500 finished square feet in its two-story layout, including a finished basement.
Over the course of 8 years, the home saw key updates and enhancements in these categories:
The Eian family is dedicated to living green, sustainably and energy efficiently. The approach chosen resulted in a durable and sustainable retrofit that enables the home to be an asset for the family for years to come. In combination, the carefully tailored design and solutions yielded a GreenStar Gold certification.
For more information on this project visit www.morrconstruction.com.
Design: Tim Delhey Eian, TE Studio, Ltd.
Previous to this bathroom project the homeowners contracted with Buck Brothers Construction to construct a GreenStar “Gold” Certified 2nd floor addition. They wanted to continue the “Green” renovation of their home with the decision to complete the installation of their master bathroom. Space and basic mechanics had been planned and laid out during the development and construction of their 2010 2nd floor addition.
Supported by an established collaborative relationship and clarity to the goals of sustainability and efficiency the owners and our staff finalized the scope and details for the bathroom. Reclaimed pedestals sinks and faucets from a local salvage company, a dual flush, water conserving toilet, low VOC paints and flow restricted faucets were folded into the shell constructed in their previous project. The completed bathroom presented them with an open, airy room including a porthole view of their front yard treetops.
The design process, construction and, most conclusively, the final product were a testament to the initial commitment and planning invested by the homeowners. Decisions made three years earlier ensured a continuation of their dedication to a sustainable construction and life style. An added plus for them was achieving another Gold certification for their Green home.
For more information on this project visit www.buck-bros.com.
For more information on this project visit www.buck-bros.com.
For more information on this project visit www.quarve.com.
Vujovich Design Build has received MN GreenStar’s highest New Home honor – Gold Certification. The project named, “The Idea Farm” is the first MN GreenStar certified project built by Vujovich Design Build.
Using local materials and building suppliers, The Idea Farm combines the state’s farming history and with modern sustainability. Connecting the home with land and nature, building practices included the use of recycled materials, geothermal heating, rain-water collection, reuse of gray water, composting, and reseeding native prairie grasses and pastures.
“In designing and building The Idea Farm our goal was to combine the highest possible levels of green building with sophisticated architecture; green + beautiful,” states Peter Vujovich, co-owner and founder of Vujovich Design Build.
By Peter Vujovich, Vujovich Design Build
For more information on this project visit www.vujovich.com.
Live Green, Live Smart’s The Sustainable House TM is a participant in Minnesota GreenStar’s Remodeling pilot program and the LEED for Homes Pilot ProjectTM. Live Green, Live Smart has transformed an ordinary post-War rambler in a suburban neighborhood into a Century hour that will be energy efficient, environmentally healthy, respectful of the natural environment, and comfortable for family life as climate and energy resources alter in the coming decades.
The green building materials and techniques as applied to the House are less conspicuous than alternative energy sources, but no less important to our Platinum remodel.
By Peter Lytle, Live Green Live Smart
For more information on this project visit http://livegreenlivesmart.org.
This home located on Elm St. in Indianapolis, IN was an abandoned space, built in 1910, that was bid on for redevelopment through the Southeast Neighborhood Development (SEND) organization’s Transfer and Transform program, which seeks to reinvigorate the community
“William Wagnon of Green Path Homes had been looking for an opportunity to do a LEED Platinum certified redevelopment on a house that could serve as an example of green building for contractors, home owners and a city in need of sustainability.” The house on Elm presented a perfect opportunity to showcase the economic viability of a green project as well as its added health and enjoyment benefits.
No subsidies or donations were taken to help the project along. “We wanted to do it as a market-rate project so that nobody could make an excuse for not doing it. That’s the point I wanted to make,” Wagnon said.
“The house now features around $7,000 worth of insulation, putting the home’s heating efficiency well-above most standards. The floor plan was changed to allow for a contemporary living style. Raised ceilings and other space improvements provide for maximum storage in the home. A rain garden now sits at the front of the house fed by a drain pipe from the roof. The backyard deck looks out onto a single-car garage, raised planters for growing vegetables and a patch of lawn.” Additionally, 100% of installed plants were drought tolerant further reducing irrigation needs. In total, the outdoor water savings plus the water savings due to the indoor installation of highly efficient faucets, showers, and toilets etc. results in a monthly water savings of 69% based on total water use. We were able to utilize the V4 Homes Workbook: Water Reduction Calculator to derive this number. A copy of the information is attached to the project profile at the bottom of this post.
The small 960 sq ft. 2 bedroom 1 bath home is located in an area with outstanding access to community resources such as public transportation. This well sealed home uses energy efficient appliances and is expected to save 47% on energy bills. Insulated piping adds to the efficiency of this home.
A central HVAC system equipped with an additional dehumidification mode adds to the health of the home along with the use of hardwood with a preference for FSC certified woods.
So much care was put into this home on Williams blog he writes … “Walter, who has does the exterior sheathing, rigid foam insulation and now the siding work is putting flashing tabs behind each butt joint on the siding. These joints will all be caulked, but it’s just a fact that caulk fails in a couple of years. But with the flashing tabs, any water that penetrates is redirected right back to the outside.
Brad nailed every shingle of the roof by hand. Yes, it takes much longer, but he knows each one is set. In building the soffit end caps, he cut fairly complex pieces so it could be 1 piece of solid wood, instead of having multiple joints that would require caulking.”
This project was the first residential home in the area to achieve the prestigious LEED Platinum certification.
News Post Featuring this Project
Green Path Home Website and Blog
Green Home Institute
PO Box 68164
Grand Rapids MI 49516
Tel: (616) 458-6733
Toll Free: (888) 533-3274
- GreenHome Institute continues Green Affordable Housing Initiative after receiving Wege Foundation Grant.
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- Jeff Dombrowski, affordable housing developer to lead GHI as president through 2018
- Danny McGee, Sustainability Consultant takes Vice President Roll on GHI Board
- Dave Dye, sustainable homes designer joins GHI Board and takes on secretary position.