What Is The Living Building Challenge?

What Is The Living Building Challenge?

Projects that are able to meet the Living Building Challenge (LBC) standards are considered exemplary models of green construction and have received the highest level of environmental attention. Started by Jason F. McLennan, Bob Berkebile and the Cascadia Green Building Council the LBC is a program that encourages construction focused on sustainable energies, water and materials. Requirements are made up of different performance categories, or Petals, which are sectioned into Imperatives. These include: Place, Water, Energy, Health and Happiness, Materials, Equity and Beauty. Additionally, projects have to recognize their Living Transect, which concentrates on the actual site chosen for development…. read more

Zero Cottage Reconceives The Townhouse

Zero Cottage Reconceives The Townhouse

From David Baker Architects, the Zero Cottage in San Francisco, California is an interesting space. The vertical construction was an addition to its neighboring building. Reinventing what the inner workings of a residence can offer, a multifunctional aspect was applied to the structure. The cottage portion consists of  712 square feet of residential living area, which is situated over a workshop. The addition also includes apartment space, 2 bedrooms and a studio, as well as a storefront at street level. In addition to achieving other green certifications, the Zero Cottage is a NET PLUS building, and the sustainable features create more energy… read more

Neuroarchitecture And The Emotional Response

Neuroarchitecture And The Emotional Response

Human emotions are not something we may stop and reflect on throughout the day; however we are certainly aware of when we are in a bad mood, and how that is drastically different from being in a good one. It is nothing new that design can influence mood. The idea that emotions can be effected by design choices like color, light and exposure to nature has long been studied. However, the field of neuroarchitecture tries to go further to understand why and how the human brain’s response to its environment has such an effect. According to the Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture,… read more

Mining Towns And Their Forgotten Disasters

Mining Towns And Their Forgotten Disasters

Learning about manmade and natural disasters can give perspective on environmental concerns and historical facts. Uncovering past experiences about places can be interesting, but even more intriguing is digging up information about entire populations and towns that have been affected by unforeseen circumstances. For instance, the town of Wittenoom, Australia has a unique slogan that can be found on a circulating flier: “Visiting Wittenoom is not worth risking your life.” More than scary signage, it actually serves as an ominous warning. The town was built up as a productive mining community. However, it was not until after the mine workers and… read more

E+Green Home Is A Self-Contained Design

E + Green Home Is A Self-Contained Design

From the architectural and design team at Unsangdong Architects in collaboration with the Kolon Institute of Technology, the E + Green Home is an impressive model with ultramodern green architecture and smart energy resources. It is a prototype that was developed a few years ago with an emphasis on environmentally responsible construction, and it was intended to be a design for future developments. From the architects: “The aim of E + Green Home is to suggest three e+ concepts; 1. Energy+, sustainable Energy Plus integrated with green technologies, 2. Eco+, environmental friendly housing, 3. Emotion +, housing which stimulates customer’s design emotion.” Powered with… read more

Abandoned And Deteriorating Hashima Island

Abandoned And Deteriorating Hashima Island

Appreciating structures and landmarks is a favorite pastime of many. However, the world is full of places that have been long forgotten about and left to decay. Ghost towns provoke interest and allure, but there is also abandoned architecture at sea, floating alone and deteriorating slowly with each ebb and flow. One island that was inhabited and developed in the 1890′s housed a productive coal mine and the workers who toiled there. Hashima Island, also known as Gunkanjima or Battleship Island, was established by the Mitsubishi Corporation as an undersea mining operation. Since the spot of land contained a massive underwater bed of… read more

Passive Houses Offer Ecologically Exemplary Builds

Passive Houses Offer Ecologically Exemplary Builds

Passive homes can be seen throughout history in many different regions around the world. Building around the climate to make homes more efficient and comfortable indoors has been employed by common sense builders for centuries. However, the term passive houses was coined and researched for more widespread use in 1990 when the first home to include the name was initiated and built by Bo Adamson and Wolfgang Feist. This type of structure utilizes passive energy and passive solar gains. Passive designs are intended to make the most use of shading and daytime sunlight. In addition to being well ventilated, they also employ… read more

WFH House Offers A Sustainable Prefab Design

WFH House Offers A Sustainable Prefab Design

The way many are thinking of housing has been changing for the past several years. Some construction designs are focusing on smaller floor plans and economical materials, and others are trying to budget and fit in what is most important to a sustainable lifestyle. Arcgency has come up with a model for a prefabricated and modular home with a flexible design called WFH House. The framework is made from shipping containers and uses 40 foot high standard sections as the support systems. The building can actually be configured in several ways in order to serve different functions. It can also be changed to fit various weather conditions,… read more

Budget Built Blackpool House Towers Amid The Trees

Budget Built Blackpool House Towers Amid The Trees

Houses that are connected to nature can often blend in with the surroundings. However, this one from Glamuzina Paterson Architects Ltd. isn’t afraid to stand out and be itself while still being responsive to its topographical space. Called the Blackpool House, it is located in Blackpool, Waiheke. The clients wanted a house that could collaborate with the sprawling canopy of trees surrounding the property, without breaking the bank. Instead of building expansively outward, the architects designed a vertical construction. Resembling a fort that climbs up into the tree line, the structure’s height offers gorgeous views throughout. The home was economically built, but there… read more

How To Make Steel Blend Into The Landscape

How To Make Steel Blend Into The Landscape

Located in the hills in California, this home from Barton Myers Associates is a model for seamlessly merging cold construction materials organically into the landscape. Comprised mostly of steel and concrete, the Montecito Residence is uniquely situated on a tricky arboreal and rugged plot. While the topography is gorgeous, wild and includes thick greenery, huge onsite boulders and oak trees, it was likely a challenge to begin plans as to how to position a home on the site. For the build the architectural team had a home in mind that could be replicated and mass produced with materials like exposed… read more