Goshorn Woods Single Family GreenStar Homes Gold Certification showcases simple renovation

The MN Brick House project goes GreenStar Gold and scores 10!

Whole Foods Mixed Use Market Rate Housing Certify LEED Silver in Minneapolis

Ryan Companies and The Excelsior Group collaborated to bring this 579,706-square-foot mixed-use project to downtown Minneapolis. The project – called 222 Hennepin – will contain 286 luxury apartments and will be anchored by the first Whole Foods Market in downtown Minneapolis.

222 Hennepin PIC1

Ryan Companies co-developed the project with The Excelsior Group, specialists in multifamily real estate. Ryan is also the architect-of-record and builder for the project, which will occupy a full city block at the corner of Hennepin and Washington Avenues. The corner is one of the most prominent downtown, and development challenges had kept it vacant for more than five years.

A 40,000 -square-foot Whole Foods Market occupies the ground floor of the project. Luxury apartments, featuring dramatic views of the downtown skyline and Mississippi River, occupy the second through sixth floors. Ryan Design worked with Humphreys & Partners Architects on the conceptual design of the project, which focused on balancing the housing needs of sophisticated, discerning apartment residents with the commercial needs of a top-tier urban grocery store.

222Hennepin PIC INTProject amenities include a fourth-floor terrace with an outdoor pool, bocce ball area, fire pit, dog walk, enclosed party room, cyber cafe and state-of-the-art fitness center. The terrace itself affords spectacular views of the downtown Minneapolis skyline. The construction of the project prioritizes sustainable building practices by incorporating an existing 300-stall parking structure, effectively wrapping the new project around the existing improvements and re-using them.

In working toward LEED Silver Certification for mid-rise residential, the team

LEED Facts Labelincorporated a variety of sustainable and energy-saving elements into the new building. Some of these features include:

  • The downtown location encourages the use of public transportation as well as bike and foot traffic, which reduces emissions. In addition, the compact, amenity-rich site promotes community living.
  • The existing 300-stall parking structure remained in place, which saved in excess of 20 million pounds of concrete and over 1 million pounds of steel rebar that would have been used to replace it.
  • Saving the existing parking structure drastically reduced the demolition waste that would have been generated.
  • Cleaning up, reinvesting and redeveloping an urban brownfield site of contaminates protects the environment and reduces blight.
  • The building is 100% smoke-free and extra measures have been taken to seal the units to reduce air leakage which will lower the risks of indoor air pollutants.
  • The use of high efficiency water faucets, showers and toilets reduce water demand.
  • The off-site fabrication of the interior roof, walls and floors minimized the waste created on-site. In addition, approximately 65% of the construction waste was diverted from landfills through recycling programs.
  • The use of low maintenance, non-invasive native plants, which will thrive in an urban environment, will reduce irrigation needs.222 Hennepin PIC2

Click here to learn more about Ryan’s sustainability efforts.

Follow 222 Hennepin on Facebook or Twitter for the latest project updates.

Awards

– http://www.ryancompanies.com/projects/222-hennepin/

Download and share the project profile – PDF

Burns Valley, MN GreenStar Gold Remodel uses passive and active solar

Leff Project – LEED Platinum Single Family

Grand Teton Eco-Smart Home goes LEED Platinum & Zero Energy Capable in IL

Michigan GreenStar’s First Certified Remodel in Grand Rapids

Being the Executive Director at an organization that promotes and trains on residential green building, Brett Little decided  to put his money where his mouth was and commit to green remodeling in his first home purchase. Brett and his wife Laura wanted to commit to the up and coming city of Grand Rapids Michigan, which was easy to do with all the past few years of recognition and grow (Most sustainable mid-sized city, beer city USA 12′ and 13′, top ten place to find a job, most LEED building per capital and etc etc. ). The project is a prime of example of how one can use GreenStar on a small remodel / weatherization job without being too invasive to the home. Little House New Pic

The 2 story house circa the 1920s was aesthetically  in great shape, had a newly remodeled kitchen, intact wood windows and trim, good paint, half finished the basement and very well kept landscaped (turf) yard.

What the house was missing was quickly shown in the inspection and energy audit. They revealed a lack of any decent insulation/air sealing,  chuck full of incandescent light bulbs, inefficient water fixtures, noisy bath fan old and oversized heating/cooling systems  along with a dinosaur of a water heater and no garden in the perfectly south facing fenced in backyard.

The target was LEED Silver certification through a Gut Rehab, but we quickly had determined that exposing the exterior or interior walls to air seal plus removing the shower and tub surround to add in a non-paper face drywall would go way over our budget. While LEED may fall more in line with a Deep Green Retrofit, we opted to do a Moderate Green Retrofit.

From there it was clear that the once called MNGreenStar program would make the most sense and they used it to document the existing conditions and come up with our goals to make the home better. As you can see in the initial energy audit in which they used was the HERS Model (think an MPG sticker for your house) and came out at 175. You can see a little more on results we got here.  This number was on track with the old homeowners energy bills which we acquired during the audit.  Their overall order of importance to the home upgrades was Energy Efficiency, Indoor Environmental Quality, Water Conservation, Landscaping and then Material Conservation.

Back deck

They came across a unique financing that allowed them to do a lot of work in the up front while getting a longer return on investment, MI Saves had partnered with their gas company DTE to allow a $2,500 kickback to those who could show a performance plan of gas savings of 30% with an upgrade. Trane/WellsFargo also had a fantastic deal with a 0% 5-year loan that allowed other products outside of their brand to make up 50% of the costs.

 

 

 

Key achievements for GreenStar Certification 

  • Insulation + air sealing
    • R 38 Spray foam in attic – Foam had cane/beat sugar components
    • Closed-cell Spray foam rim band joist and 1/4 of basement wall
    • 4 inches of Rigid Cellulose called Eco-Cell on basement walls  
    • Drill n fill cellulose added in the empty wallsEE
    • Caulking and Air sealing the windows and trim
  • New Storm Windows 
  • New fiberglass energy star door + weather stripping old door 
  • 96% Efficient, modulating and right sized furnace with ECM
  • 90% Efficient Hybrid 20-gallon water heater
  • Sealed all exposed ducts and hot water pipes
  • Programmable Thermostat
  • Mostly LED’s, some CFLs with some Dimmers or Motion sensors
  • Air changes per Hour (ACH): 5.1
  • Final HERS: 65
  • Final Energy Performance Score: 24,000 KWHe
  • Home Energy Score: 10
  • 181 Points in E.EIEQ
  • Ultimate Air Energy Recovery Ventilator (ERV)
  • New Panasonic Exhaust Fan
  • Closed Combustion Furnace & Water Heater
  • Vented Hood Range
  • No VOC Paint In Basement
  • MERV 10 Filter
  • Asbestos Removed from heating ductsWC
  • Radon Test (negative)
  • Whole House Carbon Water Filtration
  • 46 Points in IEQ
  • Water Leak Test
  • .5 GPM Bathroom Aerator
  • 1.6 GPM Water Sense Shower Head
  • Niagara Stealth Toilet at .8 Gallons Per Flush (half of a normal toilet!)
  • SCPlan to not water lawn during the day
  • Reduced Turf
    28 points in water conservation
  • Installed Food Garden & Raised Beds
  • High Walkscore of 80 out of 100
  • Compost and Recycle almost all waste through the city & organic cycle
  • 24 points in Site and Community Impact

Because this was a light remodel and weatherization they did not score too many material points. Materials are mainly for extensive work being done and refurbishment in existing homes.

To see the entirely completed checklist, go here and download it or view it online 

Our blog details 1 years worth of utility date & costs associated with the project.  It also features lessons learned. They will be keeping it up to date by monitoring the performance, durability, comfortably and maintenance.

BrocGarden Image FullThey plan to achieve Silver Certification within 2 years by converting more of the backyard to a food garden and the entire front yard over to a mix of drought tolerant and native plant species along with raised bed food gardens. Adding rain barrels and fixing the gutters. We hope to achieve more points by painting the exterior of the house with carcinogen free no VOC paint.

Other current issues – No return ducts in the 2nd floor and some older ducts still panned in the joist may be causing temp swings in the second floor and higher summer humidity. We have an idea of opening up the kitchen to connect to the living and dining and during that time we could potentially add return ducts and seal the current ducts.

 

 

Terra GreenStar IL Gold Gut Rehab

 This is not your average gut/rehab by a “flipper.” It’s IL’s 2nd GrIL Wilmette Gut RehabeenStar Homes Gold Certified remodel project seeking to preserve and re use a home instead of building new. This home was featured on the 2014 GreenBuilt Tour in IL. At Terra Green, they follow two basic rules: If they wouldn’t put it in their own home, they won’t put it in yours; and they’ll make the home as affordable and green as possible.  First they started with a team effort that took different skill sets to go around the room and determine the best goals for the project and then after the project held post construction team meetings to discuss issues and lessons learned.  This type of exercise is important to ensure homes meet green targets throughout the process as well determine what can be done better on the next.
This home focuses on a tight building envelope, energy efficiency and high indoor air quality.  Air changes per hour were 30% better than code at 3.14 ACH through advanced air sealing techniques, a self closing door to the garage prevents exhaust from entering the home. No carpet along with Zero VOC finishes and adhesives, MERV 12 air filters, no formaldehyde cabinetry, GreenGuard certified kitchen countertop, duct cleanings, sealed crawlspace and duct joints and radon tight sump dome with a radon mitigation system also help aid the improved air quality of the home. Other improved health and comfort features include keeping major electrical loads away from bedroom, sealed ducts with mastic and there were fully ridged and located appropriately for air distribution.
The builder highlights many little things that add up to a big improvement: caulked penetrations, Energy Star windows, heavy insulation, high-efficiency heating and cooling, ceiling fans, Water Sense certified fixtures and all CFL or LED lighting. The windows were repaired and resealed as opposed to replaced. A 16 SEER HCFC A/C was added for improved comfort, efficiency and reduced global impact.

The site itself features landscaping that helps reduce cooling load and implements sidewalk shading and a roof water drainage system catches 20% of storm water run off. Grading and slopes are used through out the site to protect the home from potential water damage as keep a home dry is the 1 green application you can implement on an existing home.

Terra Green – Tamarisk Lane Crystal Lake, IL 60014 

GreenStar Points

150 Energy
64 Materials
107 Health
21 Water
36 Place

Total Points 378

SIZE: 2,324 square feet
PROJECT TYPE: Single Family- Renovation/Remodel

OWNER/DEVELOPER:

Terra Green Incorporated
345 Little Marryat Road, Trout Valley, IL  60013
847-516-8052
terragreen.vpweb.com
Terra Green are green developers, builders and consultants specializing in eco-friendly building at an affordable price.

Star Residence Goes GreenStar Silver in Wilmette, IL

TStar Residence Insidehe client is an empty nester who sought to build a green home in Wilmette.  Previous homes she had built in the Northeast included green ideas and concepts, but she desired to expand from those restricted builds and create something for her current lifestyle, while planning ahead for future physical challenges if they were to occur.

This home includes a passive solar, double wall construction, low E windows and doors, light colored shingles, and a detached garage. The home also features paneling installed by Hardie, sun shades, spray foam insulation, energy star appliances, high efficiency furnaces and water heater, reclaimed finishes, low VOC cabinetry, and clean burning fireplaces. Tremendous amounts of passive solar heating and lighting pulse through double wall construction for a tight home. Reflective color shingles were installed to reduce heat gain, while sun shades were implemented to control the lighting, giving the home a remarkable atmosphere. The home was also pre design and wired to be solar pv ready if the homeowner chooses to add solar. Water efficient fixtures, toilets and valve control kitchen sink were installed to conserve water and energy. Milwork, doors and windows contain FSC certified wood and/or 25% post consumer recycled content and are low emitting.

The home has an impressive Air Changes per Hour at 1.4 with a HERS index rating of 51 making it 49% more energy efficient. Native/drought tolerant landscaping made up about 60% of the added landscape and veggie garden raised beds give the ability to grow local food.

GreenStar Homes Points 

  • Energy 170
  • Materials 105
  • Health 106
  • Water 38
  • Place 83
  • Total 502

SIZE: 2,400 square feet

PROJECT TYPE: Single Family- New Construction

DESIGNER/ARCHITECT:

Coda Design + Build
600 Waukegan Rd. Suite 129, Northbrook, IL 60062
847-920-9700
www.codadb.com
Providing the Chicago Metropolitan area unprecedented residential real estate consultation, design services, construction services and home concierge services.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Coda-Design-Build/190749694435922
Houzz: http://www.houzz.com/coda-design-build

MI Solar works in Muskegon – Project update

Hesselink Installation – Completed May 19, 2014 – Update January 2015

Why?  Someone has to take a risk and start the ball rolling.  I have always believed in leading by example. Solar does work in Michigan and I want to provide details that actually demonstrate that solar is affordable for an average home owner, on an existing home and that it does work in Michigan. It is exciting to see that so far we are on track for the projected 80%  of my $55.00 monthly savings– Renae Hesselink

Renea Headshot & Solar Pv

Details

  • Muskegon County, Egelston Township
  • 5 KW System, 18 panels, SolarWorld, Made in USA, Solarworld purchases from businesses in Michigan exceeds $1 million
  • Footprint: Approximately 360 square feet
  • 2012 Electric Usage 12,149 Kwh, $ 1686.39 total  Average of 1012
  • 1470 square feet roof
  • 2012 Electric Usage  12,149 Kwh, $ 1686.39 total  Average of 1012 Kwh/month
  • 2013 Electric Usage 8,663 Kwh $1283.18 total  Average of 721 Kwh/month

 Related Costs:

  • Removal of a tree $500 *
  • Upgrade Electrical Panel to 200 amp $1500 *
  • Consumers Energy Application $100
  • Amount Financed: $14,580 @ 7% 10 years
  • Payments $168.10
  • Expected Payback 10 years
  • Expected Panel Life 25 years warranty, life 25 years +
  • Estimated 30% Federal Tax Credit when file 2014 taxes $4810
  • Bottom line cost after 30% tax credit $9770.00

Things to consider:

  • My house faces east so I will not get the maximum production – south facing is the best
  • Inverter replacement expected around year 15

Results after the first 26 days of production

*Not adding into the cost of the system to figure out my return on investment, as I would have done this anyway

Here is a summary of my journey:

September 2013 – was notified that the Mi Solar program is available on the west side of Michigan now

Completed the online application to Srinergy, sent them 12 months of my electric usage – copies of my

Consumers Energy billsUpdate Solar Usage

  • Srinergy determined that I would be eligible with the removal of a tree in my front yard – proposal received
  • October 6, 2013 – tree removed
  • October 18, 2013 – applied for a loan through Genisys Credit Union (I did not have a relationship with a credit union in Michigan which was a requirement for a loan) – approved at 7% interest rate
  • October 21, 2013 Received and signed contract from Srinergy
  • Late October determined that my electrical panel needed to be upgraded to a 200 amp – this was a slow process as I tried to find someone locally to do this work. Finally received a proposal in early January and work was completed in early March. With the harsh winter we had some of the delay was due to having work to be completed outside.
  • December 20, 2013 – Generator Interconnection Application completed and submitted to Consumers Energy with a check for $100 and a site plan
  • Then the harsh, harsh winter sets in and we waited and waited until the deep snow piles surrounding my house disappeared and it warmed up enough to work outside – a very long winter and spring didn’t appear until May it seems like. During this time we attempted to find a local electrical contractor that was willing to learn the skills to install. I originally tried to get the contractor that I had worked with to be the one and they were very slow to respond. Finally Sirnergy found Belasco Electric of Muskegon to work with and train.
  • Pulling the building permit from my Township took about three weeks. Not sure why so long but it finally came through the week of May 5, 2014.
  • May 19, 2014 – installation begins and is completed by May 21st. Before we could turn on the system it had to be approved by the electrical inspector and building inspector which all occurred by May 23rd.
  • May 23rd at 5:00 p.m. I flipped the switch on.
  • A week or so later I received my online account information for Watch-A-Watt so I could view my energy production over the web.
  • May 31, 2014 – completed my installation documents. Afadavit for the Renewable Energy Credits, and completion of the work.
  • June 5, 2014 – completed my loan paperwork, first payment due mid-July
  • Consumers Energy needed to install a bi-directional smart meter – I had a smart meter that had been installed last year but needed to be change and they did that on June 11, 2014 at 11:00 a.m.
  • June 9th received a request that our Township Building Inspector wanted to come on-site to inspect – that was done on June 12th and no issue – received a sign-off

solar2 003

Other things to consider:

Somewhere in that timeline (early on) I also contacted my home insurance company to inquire about extra coverage which was not needed.

Local Fire Department – which I have yet to do as of June 19th – received a document from Srinergy (my request) on how to handle a fire on a structure with rooftop solar. I want to take this and meet with my local fire chief. Training and awareness opportunity.

Things that I will be watching and reporting:  Property Value

Project Team

o  Installer: Srinergy  http://srinergy.com/

o  Electrical Contractor: Belasco Electric http://belascoelectric.com/

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