The most recent blogs at Green Building Advisor

My Forays Into Multifamily Affordable Housing

Posted on February 23, 2011 by Carl Seville, GBA Advisor in Green Building Curmudgeon

After a decades-long career in high-end, single-family renovation and construction, and a relatively new business providing consulting and certification services for the same market, I recently became involved in several multifamily projects. Starting with National Green Building Standard (NGBS) certification on a market-rate apartment building that was completed in 2010, I am now in the early stages of LEED certification for several affordable projects throughout the southeast.

Blog Review: Kitchen-Exchange

Posted on February 23, 2011 by Scott Gibson in Green Building Blog

Peggy Deras is a certified kitchen designer and certified interior designer in the San Francisco Bay area who launched her Kitchen-Exchange blog as a companion to her Web site, Kitchen Artworks.

Home Energy Monitoring, Part 3: The Wrap-Up

Posted on February 23, 2011 by Christopher Briley in Green Architects' Lounge

In this final part of the episode, Phil and I continue our chat with Peter Troast of Energy Circle about home energy monitoring. We conclude this epic trilogy by discussing:

  • Cost. How much are these systems going to set you back?
  • Renewables. These are the perfect tools for monitoring the generation of electricity by your installed renewables too.
  • Solar Decathlon 2011: Team Canada's Turtle-like TRTL

    Posted on February 22, 2011 by Richard Defendorf in 2011 Solar Decathlon

    The path to Solar Decathlon 2011 for Team Canada – an interdisciplinary group of students from the University of Calgary – cuts through the prairie of southern Alberta and incorporates the culture and traditions of the area’s indigenous people, the Treaty 7 First Nations of Alberta.

    Should It Be a Passivhaus or a Passive House?

    Posted on February 21, 2011 by Scott Gibson in Q&A Spotlight

    Jason Kibbe is in the enviable position of planning the construction of a new house that will be financed entirely by the sale of his current home, leaving him in new digs without a mortgage.

    Kibbe plans to swap his 4-bedroom, 2 1/2-bath house in south-central Pennsylvania for a 3-bedroom, 2-bath house of between 1,500 and 1,700 sq. ft, and he's upfront about his motives:

    Where Does the Housewrap Go?

    Posted on February 18, 2011 by Martin Holladay, GBA Advisor in Musings of an Energy Nerd

    Let’s say you’re building a house with plywood or OSB sheathingMaterial, usually plywood or oriented strand board (OSB), but sometimes wooden boards, installed on the exterior of wall studs, rafters, or roof trusses; siding or roofing installed on the sheathing—sometimes over strapping to create a rainscreen. . You plan to install 2 or 4 inches of rigid foam on the exterior of the wall sheathing, followed by vertical rainscreenConstruction detail appropriate for all but the driest climates to prevent moisture entry and to extend the life of siding and sheathing materials; most commonly produced by installing thin strapping to hold the siding away from the sheathing by a quarter-inch to three-quarters of an inch. strapping and siding. Where does the housewrap go?

    Depending on who you talk to, you get two different answers:

    • It goes between the rigid foam and the vertical strapping, or
    • It goes between the sheathing and the rigid foam.

    Trombe Walls

    Posted on February 16, 2011 by Alex Wilson in Energy Solutions

    Last week I wrote about sunspaces and how they can be used to deliver passive solar heat to our homes. Another option for passive solar heating is the Trombe wall, or thermal storage wall.

    Solar Decathlon 2011: Appalachian State’s Solar Homestead

    Posted on February 15, 2011 by Richard Defendorf in 2011 Solar Decathlon

    To the extent they try to squeeze a lot of innovation into small packages, all Solar Decathlon entries reflect a pioneering spirit. But Appalachian State University’s entry, the Solar Homestead, also reflects homebuilding strategies that arose from the pioneering spirit of an entirely different era – that of Appalachia’s early settlers, whose houses and outbuildings were designed to help them cope with isolation and wilderness conditions in the mountains of North Carolina.

    2011 Solar Decathlon Resource Guide

    Posted on February 14, 2011 by GBA Team in 2011 Solar Decathlon

    The Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon, which launched in 2002 and will present its fifth competition in 2011, is one of the world’s most instructive and rigorous academic competitions. Twenty teams of college students design, build, and operate small solar-powered houses that they will transport, often as modules or collapsed panels, to the Decathlon site. There, they will reconstruct their houses and prepare them for visitors and judges.

    New Urbanist Andres Duany Lashes Out at LEED

    Posted on February 14, 2011 by Carl Seville, GBA Advisor in Green Building Curmudgeon

    As quoted in an online article, Andres Duany, one of the founders and leaders of the New Urbanist movement, both predicts a decline in LEEDLeadership in Energy and Environmental Design. LEED for Homes is the residential green building program from the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). While this program is primarily designed for and applicable to new home projects, major gut rehabs can qualify. certifications and argues against excessive regulation of development. Now, those who follow my posts know I am not the biggest fan of LEED. While it's well intentioned, I think LEED, like most green building programs, is flawed and long overdue for some major revisions.

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