Architecture Meets Agriculture

Architecture Meets Agriculture

Living in the city doesn’t have to equal an automatic lack of outdoor greenery or gardening space. Perfect for small spaces or places with no outdoor access, vertical design allows the benefits of farming without the farm. In vertical growing, plants hang while their roots are submerged in nutrients, and the efficient ventilation allows a steady supply of fresh air. Developed by vertical farming forerunner Dr. Dickson Despommier, the Vertical Farm Project assessed that the population will have grown by an additional 3 billion or so by the year 2050, with an estimated 80% of people living in cities. With the… read more

Birds Nests For Humans?

"Spirt Nest" by Jayson Fann

When one thinks of birds nests, one usually does not think, “Hmm…I’d like to live in a giant version of that.” And yet, in the California coast in the U.S., a growing populace wakes up each morning thinking that very thought. And they’re not alone. It began with an idea, namely Californian artist Jayson Fann’s. He thought it would be keen to create “spirit nests”, as he calls them, for humans to inhabit.Obviously not as a permanent living solution, but as a getaway home or beach property. Something cozy to retire to after a long day’s work, or as a… read more

Hotels and Resorts Made From Recycled Materials

Hotels and Resorts Made From Recycled Materials

Environmentally sustainable designs are gradually becoming more popular as well as necessary. Incorporating ecologically smart strategies into large-scale operations like hotels and resorts are to the benefit of guests, the local community and the environment. One example of a resort with conservation in mind is the Alila Villas Uluwatu located in Bali. Designed by Singapore based company WOHA, the posh vacation spot was made mostly from recycled and locally reclaimed materials. Seemingly every detail has been examined with an ecological microscope. The resort is a Green Globe certification registrant, and reportedly is the first hotel in the area to earn… read more

Lead Poisoning in U.S. Children

Lead Poisoning in U.S. Children

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have issued a report stating that 1 in 38 children in the U.S that are ages 1 through 5 have lead poisoning. This preventable health risk has most likely increased due to the CDC having changed the lead exposure guidelines last year. This has been the first change regarding lead levels in over 2 decades. The modification is now half of the previous amount, with a level of 5 as the newer cutoff. The number was reduced due to increasing research which shows how destructive lead is to the human system. Lead… read more

A House Made Of Earth

A House Made Of Earth

A team at the University of Oklahoma has obtained a grant to put an earthen home to a barrage of tests. The home would be composed of compressed earth blocks constructed from soil, clay, and cement mixtures. Earthen homes are said to be earthquake resistant, energy effective, and less costly than traditional homes. The team has acquired an EPA grant of $14,897 to erect a compressed earth block house and a traditional framed house to National Green Building Standards. They will analyze the energy, cost, and its overall impact on the environment. The materials are expected to be tested for… read more

Green is Gold

Green design for the future

Green is the Gold of the modern times. Gone are the days when machine age ruled the trend charts, the days when luxury was displayed by gas-guzzling heating or electricity-sucking lighting. With the rise in demand for energy the need and awareness for conserving it (and devising ways to conserve it) has also risen. This very trait is well displayed in the homes and the buildings of today. They are usually designed in order to use the maximum potential of natural and renewable resources. With this in mind, the luxuries should be designed with maximum organic resources and the non-eco-friendly… read more

Biodegradable Houses

Biodegradable Houses

Materials that are made by nature can be consumed by nature. Being as such, bio-degradation has been around since Earth’s beginnings. Yet, innovations continue to create ‘new’ biodegradable items. This is essential for items like packaging where materials are otherwise artificial and non-biodegradable. However, some people are taking it a step further, using the barest of materials to create biodegradable houses. In a way it is actually more like backtracking, only today’s biodegradable houses are built for modern lifestyles. They are often constructed using raw materials like bare tree limbs and even the Earth itself, achieving a minimalistic design. Though there are still those that incorporate a woodland feel, if not appearing altogether as a modern… read more

Nests from Bricks

Brick Habitat Photo

Urban areas are famously well-known for destroying ecosystems during the process of developing housing centers, apartments, offices. Many natural habitats are killed during construction and hardly any attempts are made at replacing the loss of animal and plant life. Therefore, it is our responsibility as homeowners and curators to make sure the reintroduction of life to our living space is accomplished. Biodiversity is a necessary thing for the continuity of our existence and living in mutual cohesion with the Earth greatly benefits everyone. It’s easy to create a sustainable ecosystem in your own backyard, or even on the walls of… read more

MOSS Office Pods

Office pod

Recently, we published a story about a company in NYC that won a competition to create updated apartment complexes in the city. Their winning design was a building created entirely out of detachable micro units. A few years ago, a similar setup, the OfficePOD, was created in the U.K. as a means to lower costs in large offices. The POD would act much like a garden shed and sit in the backyard, but instead of garden tools, the POD is full of office appliances, desks, computers, and whatever you need to work at home. In the U.K., the POD’s claim… read more

Abandoned Property

Abandoned properties

Owners of immovable property in suburban areas have a legal duty to ensure that such properties are in good stead and comply with municipal by laws relating, inter alia, their upkeep and maintenance. There are owners of immovable property who have failed to maintain their property. Abandoning properties in suburban areas is usually unintentional in that when the owners acquire such property, they do so with the intention of either improving an existing structure or erecting a new structure on it. What then happens is that for one of a variety reasons, the owner decides to postpone any developments indefinitely…. read more