Flexible Design. Also called "loose fit, long life," this design principle anticipates and allows for future adaptations needed to extend a building's useful life. Design for End of Life. It is very important that each green building strategy be applied at the appropriate stage to avoid closing off options. For example, not much can be done to affect the orientation of the house after the framing is underway, but much can be done during the design of the home, and even more during the layout of roads and lots. Table 1 gives a rough guide on when to consider major design issues, systems, and components.
Building codes establish minimum requirements for building design and construction. These codes are designed to improve the quality of building construction and ensure that new projects achieve certain health and safety standards. States and local legislative bodies may adopt the latest version and customize the code to reflect local building practices and regional conditions. While these codes are developed for wide-scale adoption, it falls upon the states and local municipalities to adopt, implement, and enforce code requirements. All building types are not subject to the same codes.
I-Codes address a range of topics including fire safety, energy-efficiency, and green construction, to name a few. Energy and green construction codes are gaining more prominence as the building industry moves in the direction of sustainable, energy-efficient, high performance buildings. A subset of building codes are building energy codes, which establish minimum requirements for energy efficiency in buildings. The EPCA dictated that states receiving federal funding had to initiate energy conservation standards for new buildings.
In , the Energy Policy Act was created to address energy conservation, efficiency, and management. Energy codes encourage the development of high-performance buildings through greater efficiencies that reduce utility bills and enable buildings to have smaller, less expensive HVAC equipment. Energy codes address several efficiency measures, from insulation requirements for ductwork and piping, to lighting controls, to minimum mechanical equipment efficiencies.
Minimum codes set the floor of building code standards, while reach codes raise the ceiling, pushing high-performance buildings closer and closer to net-zero energy use. Minimum codes establish baseline requirements for buildings and are mandatory regulations. States and local jurisdictions may adopt and alter the code, provided that they are at least as stringent as required by federal mandate. Designers, developers, and contractors are responsible for complying with code. States or local jurisdictions are responsible for enforcement through plan reviews and construction inspections.
Sustainable Building Certifications | Evolutionary Home Builders
The rapid development of reach codes also known as stretch codes aim to create consistent requirements for higher-performing buildings. Normally voluntary, reach codes encourage the creation of higher-performing buildings by pushing for buildings that are more sustainable, addressing a range of topics like energy and water efficiency, site and material selection, indoor environmental quality, and project management. Reach codes can influence model code development with aspects of reach codes being incorporated into model codes over time.
There are over reach codes or green building programs used throughout the United States. The following charts describe the model codes and some reach codes.
While a formal definition has not been codified, the name implies that annual output of renewable energy produced onsite is equal to the annual purchased energy from a utility. Energy efficiency measures, smart design, and renewable energy strategies can all contribute to a net-zero energy building. Besides the obvious environmental advantages, a NZEB can protect occupants from energy price increases and future regulations; provide increased comfort by establishing a uniform interior temperature ; reduce total cost of ownership; improve reliability; and support higher resale values.
Certain market disadvantages do currently exist, including: high upfront costs, reliance on renewable energy subsidies which can be uncertain and building appraisals that do not consider long-term energy considerations. There are a number of green building programs currently in place in the United States. The expanded market interest in green homes has driven an increase in the number of green building programs across the country.
These programs also provide valuable information on the benefits of green building and of buying green-built homes. Some local programs offer resources and incentives to build green and provide training to help home builders design and construct green homes. Unlike other Habitat for Humanity projects, Atlantic Avenue incorporated many green building strategies.
The energy efficiency measures are expected to save future residents up to thirty percent on their electricity bills. The Cascadia Region Green Building Council developed the Living Building Challenge , arguably one of the most aggressive building rating programs available. The program contains a series of prerequisites, all of which a building must achieve in order to qualify.
The challenge addresses several topics, including: water, materials, energy, site, indoor quality, and aesthetics. To meet the requirements, rainwater from the building is collected and processed through a filter before it is stored in a 3,gallon, below-ground cistern. The system is able to supply water for the building for 60 days without rain.
Materials choices were also scrutinized. For example, the pavement surrounding the building is porous and will absorb almost all storm runoff. A kilowatt photovoltaic system will provide power for the facility. The landscaping includes a rain garden planted with Missouri-native plants. In addition to the exposed Eastern Red Cedar exterior and interior wood, the building includes Red Maple, Black Walnut, Ash and Hickory that was either from fallen trees or from trees slated for removal as part of the restoration activity on the Tyson grounds.
The structural wood came primarily from Pocahontas, Ark. Photo Credit: St. Find the latest news and updates from Built Green Canada. Featuring technology, program updates, builders, and industry news. We welcome industry attendance.
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Built Green Canada takes step forward in water conservation. The author illustrates an incredibly broad range of sustainable tweaks and changes — from the minuscule to the massive. What does the absolute perfect modern, sustainable home design project look like to you? You may be picturing a brand-new build that starts with nothing but an empty patch of grass — after all, the greenest buildings tend to be the newest buildings, designed from the very beginning with sustainability in mind.
But this is not typically the case — many sustainable building endeavors are based around existing structures. More and more architects are being hired to design new adaptations for already-existing buildings and homes. This growing movement to reuse buildings presents a whole new range of design challenges and opportunities. Old Buildings, New Designs uses a selection of case studies to contrast new construction with the old, and provides powerful insights into the challenges presented by each, as well as how to overcome them. Each of the 64 stunning projects featured in this book are documented completely, through their many gorgeous photographs as well as architectural drawings, illustrations, and floor and site plans.
Anyone seeking to boost the sustainability factor of their next project is sure to find bountiful inspiration in this nearly page read. From heating and cooling solutions to wind energy systems, solar paneling, thermal glazing, and even Trombe walls, the ideas featured inside are complemented by photographs and architectural plans of gorgeous, sustainable houses around the world.
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When we think of green building, we typically think of construction elements like insulation, windows, flooring, and lighting. The Sustainable Sites Handbook is the definitive resource guide for sustainable site design, construction, and management. This guide features comprehensive and detailed information on the best practices, strategies, tools, and principles for effective, eco-friendly site design.
Above all else, British author Dominic Bradbury celebrates the diversity of international design concepts in this visual masterpiece of a book.
Green Principles for Residential Design
No two of the 25 featured projects are alike; each project displays unique design concepts originating from nine different countries overall. Who knew that triple-paned windows , toxins in paint and building materials , ground source heat pumps , native plantings , and home ventilation could be so interesting? Everyone who builds a home should read this book first. Not coincidentally, it has its own rewards on a scale that all of us can immediately understand. If becoming model citizens of Planet Earth is too much to get our arms around, living in healthier, more comfortable houses that are less expensive to operate and last longer is certainly an attractive idea.
Have you found yourself wondering what the benefits to prefab homes are? Read this book! Koones spends plenty of time dispelling the myths surrounding prefabricated homes, in an approachable manner that would appeal to even the biggest skeptics. Take this tour of 25 modern, sustainable homes and see for yourself that factory-built homes are greener, more efficient, sturdier, and more cost-effective than you might have ever imagined.