Craftsmanship and Recycling in a Tudor Renovation

Georgetown, MA

Dec 8 2008 By Jesa Damora | 1 comments

General Specs and Team

Location: Georgetown, MA
Cost (USD/sq. ft.): $475/sqf

Existing space (remodeled): 700 sq. ft.
Addition: 100 sq. ft.

Builder: Dave West, Meadowview Construction Llc.
Architect: Juli MacDonald, AIA 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. AP GreenBridge Architects
Interior designer: Lisa Kawski, lmk interiors, ltd.
Landscape architect: Matthew Ulrich Landscape Design
Engineer: Alex Ross, Ross Engineering
Energy analysis: Mike Browne, Advanced Building Analysis

Construction

Existing House

Foundation: 10-in. concrete; uninsulated and unfinished basement (R-2); in the area of work, insulated slab on grade with continuous 2-in. rigid insulation below and inside foundation wall (R-10).
Walls: Stucco over 8-in. hollow clay structural tile (R-2); in area of work, 1-1/2-in. rigid insulation at inside face of exterior (R-15)
Windows: low-eLow-emissivity coating. Very thin metallic coating on glass or plastic window glazing that permits most of the sun’s short-wave (light) radiation to enter, while blocking up to 90% of the long-wave (heat) radiation. Low-e coatings boost a window’s R-value and reduce its U-factor., argonInert (chemically stable) gas, which, because of its low thermal conductivity, is often used as gas fill between the panes of energy-efficient windows. -filled insulating glass (Pella Architectural Series, U=.45, R-2.2)
Roof: clay tile over 2x8 rafters and wood 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. ; new dense-packed cellulose insulationThermal insulation made from recycled newspaper or other wastepaper; often treated with borates for fire and insect protection. (R-28)

Addition:

Foundation: slab on grade; 10-in. foundation wall; 2”-in. rigid insulation under slab and inside foundation wall (R-10)
Wall s: 2x6; full thickness IcyneneOpen-cell, low-density spray foam insulation that can be used in wall, floor, and roof assemblies. It has an R-value of about 3.6 per inch and a vapor permeability of about 10 perms at 5 inches thick. insulation (R-22)
Windows: low-e, argon-filled (U=.45, R-2.2)
Skylights: manual-venting skylights with low-e, argon-filled insulated glass (U=.60, R-1.7)
Roof: copper over sheathing on 2x8 rafters; full-thickness Icynene insulation (R-30)

Energy

Heating/cooling:under-slab radiant heating in area of work; zoned off existing Viessman
Water heating: existing oil heat switched to Simply Green 5% bio-diesel

  • Increased window area for ample day lighting, natural cooling and ventilation
  • Energy modeling and thermographic analysis of the existing house guided air-sealing measures
  • Electronic programmable thermostat
  • Dimmable CFLCompact fluorescent lamp. Fluorescent lightbulb in which the tube is folded or twisted into a spiral to concentrate the light output. CFLs are typically three to four times as efficient as incandescent lightbulbs, and last eight to ten times as long. CFLs combine the efficiency of fluorescent light with the convenience of an Edison or screw-in base, and new types have been developed that better mimic the light quality of incandescents. Not all CFLs can be dimmed, and frequent on-off cycling can shorten their life. Concerns have been raised over the mercury content of CFLs, and though they have been deemed safe, proper recycling and disposal is encouraged. bulbs throughout
  • LEDLight-emitting diode. Illumination technology that produces light by running electrical current through a semiconductor diode. LED lamps are much longer lasting and much more energy efficient than incandescent lamps; unlike fluorescent lamps, LED lamps do not contain mercury and can be readily dimmed. cove and under-cabinet lighting (Colorkinetics)
  • Energy StarLabeling system sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Energy for labeling the most energy-efficient products on the market; applies to a wide range of products, from computers and office equipment to refrigerators and air conditioners. appliances and bath ventilation fans
  • Changed heating fuel to bio-diesel

Water Efficiency

  • Rain garden for storm water management
  • Mostly native plants
  • Low-flow toilets and faucets (Toto)
  • Water-conserving dishwasher
  • Hot water taps within 30 ft. of hot water storage tank

Indoor Air Quality

  • Cabinet shells made of Columbia forest product plywood with Purebond adhesives; solid-wood fronts
  • Cellulose insulationThermal insulation made from recycled newspaper or other wastepaper; often treated with borates for fire and insect protection. (80% recycled) in existing rafter spaces
  • IcyneneOpen-cell, low-density spray foam insulation that can be used in wall, floor, and roof assemblies. It has an R-value of about 3.6 per inch and a vapor permeability of about 10 perms at 5 inches thick. in walls and ceiling of addition
  • No-VOCVolatile organic compound. An organic compound that evaporates readily into the atmosphere; as defined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, VOCs are organic compounds that volatize and then become involved in photochemical smog production. interior paints
  • No carpet
  • Forced hot water radiant heating

Green Materials and Resource Efficiency

  • Demolished foundation and tiles ground into gravel for reuse
  • Salvaged granite posts and steps
  • Other construction debris was 90% recycled
  • FSCNonprofit organization that promotes forestry practices that are sustainable from environmental and social standpoints; FSC certification on a wood product is an indicator that the wood came from a well-managed forest.-certified framing lumber and trim
  • Entry overhang used salvaged roof tiles
  • Both (30% fly ashFine particulates consisting primarily of silica, alumina, and iron that are collected from flue gases during coal combustion. Flyash is employed as a substitute for some of the portland cement used in the making of concrete, producing a denser, stronger, and slower-setting material while eliminating a portion of the energy-intensive cement required. More info) concrete and recycled-product countertops
  • Recycled glass tiles in floor and backsplash
  • Cabinetry built with FSCForest Stewardship Council. An independent, nonprofit organization that promotes responsible forest management through the use of a third-party certification process. FSC certification includes a chain-of-custody requirement that tracks sustainability of wood products from growth to end use. certified wood
  • Energy StarLabeling system sponsored by the Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Energy for labeling the most energy-efficient products on the market; applies to a wide range of products, from computers and office equipment to refrigerators and air conditioners. appliances
  • Water purification at kitchen sink (Multi-Pure)
  • Biodegradable foundation release oil

A Sustainable Remodel Touches Many Parts of this Home

The airy, light-filled renovation of this 1930s stucco Spanish Tudor house in Georgetown, Massachusetts, is packed with eco-friendly features even though no green certification program was enlisted. A new bay, great room, patio, and garden completely transformed an awkward kitchen that itself had been a renovation of a two-door garage. Extensive landscaping, including a rain garden, brought the house back in tune with its natural surroundings.

Not just a kitchen renovation
With her children grown and (mostly) gone, Elizabeth had waited for what she wanted, and wanted it done well. The project embraced a renovated foyer, office, laundry, and bathroom, as well as a new driveway and trees. She’s proud of architect Juli MacDonald’s choices, ranging from an entry addition with graceful arching braces to energy modeling, blower door testing, and thermographic inspection for heat loss.

The bounty of re-use
Inspired by the owner‘s commitment to stewardship of the natural world, used materials and appliances were almost completely recycled on craigslist or freecycle.com. Concrete debris was trucked to a re-processor, used brick integrated into the new patio, and used tiles into the new roof. Wood was taken to a salvage yard, and items left curbside were all taken. New work similarly incorporated the seen-before: Some of the counters are Richlite, made of compressed recycled paper; floor tiles are recycled glass; and new driveway posts and steps are cut from old granite curbs. All cabinetry is locally made (with no-urea formaldehydeChemical found in many building products; most binders used for manufactured wood products are formaldehyde compounds. Reclassified by the United Nations International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in 2004 as a “known human carcinogen." adhesives), as are the concrete counters, using fly ashFine particulates consisting primarily of silica, alumina, and iron that are collected from flue gases during coal combustion. Flyash is employed as a substitute for some of the portland cement used in the making of concrete, producing a denser, stronger, and slower-setting material while eliminating a portion of the energy-intensive cement required. More info from a local plant. Interior designer Lisa Kawski integrated artisan-made and commercial glass tiles on walls, both with recycled content. Construction sawdust was collected and sent to a local farm for animal bedding.

Going the extra mile
Some choices were easy: LED under-cabinet and cove lighting; Toto dual-flush toilets; no-VOCVolatile organic compound. An organic compound that evaporates readily into the atmosphere; as defined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, VOCs are organic compounds that volatize and then become involved in photochemical smog production. paints, finishes, and glues; and FSCNonprofit organization that promotes forestry practices that are sustainable from environmental and social standpoints; FSC certification on a wood product is an indicator that the wood came from a well-managed forest.-certified framing and trim. But some were sticklers. There was no way to insulate the existing peculiar hollow tile exterior walls, so Juli designed an extra wall to blanket the entire interior elevation and marry newer insulation and detailing at the bay. And award-winning builder Dave West replaced the existing concrete slab in the kitchen (remnants of an old garage) with a new one on top of proper insulation, with zoned radiant heat throughout.

Landscape designer Matt Ulrich designed a native-plants rain garden (which, unlike its name sounds, is designed to absorb lots of water during storms) that resolved flooding and freezing at the building foundation. He also specified permeable surfaces in all hardscaping. There’s even a rain barrel that supplies water for Elizabeth’s laying hens.

Lessons Learned

Lisa and Elizabeth researched products with care to adapt to what was actually available — or not — in the burgeoning green marketplace. For instance, they swapped in counters from a different maker when they found the ones they’d chosen were only available in commercial quantities. Crucially, the team looked at the whole house, applying best practices not just to the addition. Elizabeth honed to the good design and excellent craftsmanship she knows will be treasured for many years. Most of all, the happy collaboration of a great team ledLight-emitting diode. Illumination technology that produces light by running electrical current through a semiconductor diode. LED lamps are much longer lasting and much more energy efficient than incandescent lamps; unlike fluorescent lamps, LED lamps do not contain mercury and can be readily dimmed. to a superior experience and result.


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Image Credits:

  1. Matthew Ulrich Landscape Design
  2. David West

2.
Nov 16, 2009 5:30 PM ET

How to insulate a mock tudor
by robyn emerson

I see there's been cellulose insulation used in this property. We have a mock tudor too, and have found it hard to insulate. Does the cellulose get pumped onto the upper side of the ceiling? Does this cause access problems?


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