Architecture & Design

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Calatrava’s Iconic Sundial Bridge was Spawned by Salmon

Originally published on Green Building Elements Spawned by the need to protect a seemingly insignificant patch of gravel, not many folks know that Redding’s iconic Sundial Bridge rose as a result of an eco-challenge surmountable only by architect Santiago Calatrava’s sensitive and innovative expertise. Abandoned since the long-gone days of mining in Redding, California, submerged […]

December 19th

Hogwarts School (aka Gloucester Cathedral in UK) Goes Solar

Originally published on EdenKeeper.org Formally blessed and sanctified, 150 solar panels forming a 38 kW array have been pressed into religious service at the iconic Gloucester Cathedral in Gloucestershire, England. Dubbed the oldest cathedral in the world to install solar panels, the new photovoltaic system will help reduce the ancient cathedral’s energy costs by 25%. […]

December 5th

Masdar City Enters Exciting Phase 2!

Originally published on Green Building Elements The fascinating cleantech evolution of Masdar City continues! Pushing the limits of urban design and community building, Masdar City is pressing forward in its pioneering quest for the highest quality of life with the lowest carbon footprint. Setting a new international precedent for sustainable urban planning, Boston-based CBT is […]

November 18th

Cellulose Insulation – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Originally published on Green Building Elements Made from consumer paper products, cellulose insulation typically contains about 85 percent recycled content. Using this green building material can effectively lower the carbon footprint of your home or business property. Essentially, this is because cellulose insulation is plant cell matter that is still storing the carbon sequestered when […]

October 21st

Canada Tops Out World’s Tallest Wood-Frame Building

Originally published on Green Building Elements Celebrating the tallest wood-frame building of its kind anywhere in the world, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources Jim Carr recently attended the “topping out” ceremony of the Brock Commons Residence. The new University of British Columbia student housing tower rises 18 stories to reach a stunning 178.8 feet (53 […]

October 19th

Masdar City: A Test Bed for Sustainable Urban Living

Originally published on Green Building Elements Sweltering in the hot desert sun, Masdar City sits under a global microscope at the nexus of rising clean technology and the development of sustainable urban life in the glaring light of climate change. Conceived on a zero-moisture stretch of barren desert sand in Abu Dhabi, UAE, the zero-carbon, […]

October 17th

Brush & Wattle — The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Originally published on Green Building Elements The age-old construction techniques employed in traditional brush and wattle structures are time-tested and worthy of great respect. “Touching the Earth lightly,” these techniques are both low-impact on the natural environment and highly sustainable, employing the most natural and abundant of green building materials. Brush, referring to tree branches, […]

October 3rd

Bricks – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Originally published on Green Building Elements In terms of sustainability and green building materials, brick is probably king. The process of making fired clay bricks has been around for over 5,000 years and just keeps getting greener. Today’s brick kilns use about 70 percent less energy to fire bricks than just 50 years ago. Brick […]

September 22nd

Stylish Sustainability: New Student Village in Trondheim

Originally published on Green Building Elements Meaning more than just focusing on the environment, sustainability also means creating a sense of place and belonging. Interpreting this philosophy brilliantly, MDH Arkitekter has nearly completed Moholt 50|50, an award-winning university student village in Trondheim, Norway. Envisioned as a community-focused commercial district featuring distinctive Scandinavian aesthetics, MDH Arkitekter’s […]

September 21st

DARPA’s New Construction Materials… that Self-Repair?

Originally published on Green Building Elements Opening up a new field of design for construction technology, the US Department of Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is envisioning futuristic materials that repair themselves. Recently launching the Engineered Living Materials (ELM) program, DARPA’s goal is to create a whole new class of construction materials. Imagine engineering […]

September 19th

Blocks – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Originally published on Green Building Elements Blocks used for residential and commercial construction employ a wide variety of green building materials in their composition. The most popular and commonly used is the standard hollow concrete block, but there are many variations in shape, weight, and composition. Sand, cement, gravel, and water are the most commonly […]

September 15th

Meet Einstein, a New IoT Tool for Smart Commercial Buildings

Originally published on Green Building Elements Artificial intelligence company Verdigris has just announced the debut of “Einstein,” a next-generation Internet of Things (IoT) smart energy management solution. This latest IoT energy management platform from Verdigris is designed to be “the easiest most-scalable connected sensor for complex enterprise facilities.” Using innovative smart sensor and metering technology, […]

September 12th

Bamboo – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Originally published on GreenBuildingElements.com Bamboo is a truly remarkable green building material. It’s twice as strong as concrete and slightly stronger than steel. It’s also a renewable resource that needs little energy to grow, prevents soil erosion, provides biomass, offers wildlife refuge, and produces a healthy food supply for both wildlife and humans. Offering significant […]

August 29th

Unitarians Sue for Religious Liberty to Use Solar Panels

Originally published on EdenKeeper.org First Parish Unitarians are crying ‘foul’ over a recent denial to allow solar panels on the rooftop of their iconic church in Bedford, Massachusetts. Declaring the Historic District Commission’s (HDC) decision was “legally untenable, unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious,” the congregation has filed a suit against the Town of Bedford. Specifically pointing […]

August 23rd

Aluminum – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Originally published on GreenBuildingElements.com Used in a wide variety of ways in the building construction market, aluminum is a very versatile green building material, especially when it’s recycled. Everything from huge external building structures to delicate window blinds can be manufactured from this light weight, durable, and corrosion-resistant metal. Doors, windows, and awnings are popular […]

August 19th

An African Eco-Lodge “Touching the Earth Lightly”

Originally published on EdenKeeper.org Constructed with an eagle’s loft in mind, a newly renovated eco-lodge in South Africa offers a bird’s-eye view from a well-feathered nest. Overlooking lush vistas of Kruger National Park wildlife refuge, the view is so vast you might easily be inspired to sing a hymn in praise of Creation. Singita Lebombo […]

August 18th

Adobe – The ABCs of Green Building Materials

Originally published on GreenBuildingElements.com   Green building materials are as diverse as Earth itself. Some of the most sustainable materials on the planet are modern inventions, and some are as old as the hills, like adobe. Familiarizing yourself with the best green building materials will help ensure your environmentally friendly projects enjoy sustainable success. Over […]

August 12th

Top Prize Solar Bus Shelter Offers Rain Protection & More

Originally published on Green Building Elements. The greatly underestimated public bus shelter is the latest subject of a creative solar power makeover. When winners of a new competition were announced on June 30, 2016, an innovative new set of designs entered the high-tech highway to solar-powered shelters. With solar-powered glow-in-the-dark lighting, the top prize-winning bus […]

August 8th

Sustainable Log Home Designs

This post is for the growing number of sustainability practitioners who happen to be interested in log homes, a sustainable building material. Sarah Woods has informed PlanetSave about a new collection of sustainable log home floor plans she has just finished creating. The plans — available at no cost — run the gamut of square footage […]

June 16th

Sustainability Drove Design Behind US Bank Stadium

Originally published on Green Building Elements When I joined a group of journalists to visit US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, not only was I impressed with what I saw, I had the pleasure of interviewing Brian Wolfe, HKS sustainable design manager and a key member of the architectural team for the stadium. Our interview began with my question […]

March 28th

ETFE Football Stadium Will Soon Be Minneapolis Showcase

Originally published on Green Building Elements When it opens this summer, US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis will feature the only ETFE (ethylene-tetra-fluoro-ethylene) roof on a sports facility in the United States. This resilient and transparent material, long used in Europe, will now provide Minnesota Vikings football fans with a comfortable experience inside the stadium and […]

March 14th

Strategies For Thinking About A Tiny House

Originally published on Green Living Ideas Many people have been attracted to the increasingly popular idea of going small by either buying or building a tiny house. If you fit into this category, it is important to be as well-informed as possible about the tiny house trend, knowing what to look for in terms of […]

February 3rd

Analyzing Exterior Deck Options

Originally published on Green Building Elements. When asked what is a highly desired feature outside of the house, a good number of people will first select an exterior deck or porch. Here’s why: if done well, it makes an inviting place to visit with family or friends to enjoy summer cookouts, or simply as a […]

January 31st

Australia’s Small-Scale Rooftop Solar Installations Hit 4.59 GW In 2015

Originally published on Solar Love. Propelling a global boost in renewable energy, Australia’s Clean Energy Regulator has reported small-scale rooftop solar totaled 4.59 GW in 2015. As reported by pv-magazine, data released by the Clean Energy Regulator shows 119,000 new small-scale PV installations have taken place in 2015. While not as sizable as 2014, this number […]

December 30th

Phi Suea Solar Homes Store Excess Energy As Hydrogen

Originally published on CleanTechnica Four Phi Suea solar homes being developed in Chiang Mai, Thailand, will convert excess energy into hydrogen and store it in fuel cells. Here is how the energy system functions: During daytime, excess solar power from PV panels is directed to run electrolyzers and produce hydrogen. Said hydrogen can then be transformed […]

December 27th

New Funding Model May Boost Rooftop Solar In China

Originally published on CleanTechnica. Attractive kickstarters added for rooftop solar in China China may currently be the world’s largest producer of solar panels and a solar farm leader. However, it ranks low in terms of how much small-scale rooftop solar is being deployed within the country. This may soon change. Rooftop solar might even compare […]

December 10th

Washington-Based zHome Sets National Net-Zero Precedent

Originally published on CleanTechnica. Builders seeking a net-zero energy home showcase can look to BuiltGreen’s zHome townhome complex in Issaquah, Washington. White paper released According to a BuiltGreen white paper, the zHome development is the first net-zero energy townhome complex in the US, a project meant to spur the market toward deep green housing for […]

November 23rd