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design strategies + innovative technologies that promote a sustainable built environment
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San Francisco's new Exploratoruim science museum seeks net-zero energy goal

San Francisco's new Exploratoruim science museum seeks net-zero energy goal | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

When the Exploratorium science museum in San Francisco relocates next spring to a new $220-million waterside home, visitors no doubt will marvel first at the spectacular views of San Francisco Bay from the building's perch on Piers 15 and 17.


Less noticeable is the network of heating, cooling, water-use and other systems that assist in achieving the goal of net-zero energy use—a lofty target for a major museum.

The new 422,166-sq-ft Exploratorium will be nearly three times larger than the museum's current facility at the landmark Palace of Fine Arts.

The new building also could be the largest net-zero energy museum in the world, according to Nibbi Brothers, San Francisco, the project's general contractor.


Stop by the link to learn more about the city's new Exploratorium and how the project team plans on achieving the high energy-efficiency goals through green design strategies, innovative technologies and renewable energy systems...

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Massachusetts’ First Zero-Net-Energy Transportation Hub...

Massachusetts’ First Zero-Net-Energy Transportation Hub... | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Last month, Charles Rose Architects completed a highly innovative zero-net-energy building- a 24,000 square-foot transit center and government office, built with federal stimulus funds, the first of its type in Massachusetts and the region.

Also designated as a future train depot on the Connecticut River corridor, the John W. Olver Transit Center in Greenfield is designed to generate through renewable sources all the energy that it uses—meaning its net-energy consumption over the course of a year will be zero.

The transit center, which had a construction budget of $12.8 million at the time Gov. Patrick broke ground for the project in April 2009, came in at $10.4 million. The building will produce the energy it uses in a sustainable way: through solar and geothermal sources, and a boiler on site fueled by wood pellets, a lumber-industry byproduct...

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8 Amazing Green Buildings That Break Even on Energy Consumption

8 Amazing Green Buildings That Break Even on Energy Consumption | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
As zero-energy housing becomes an increasingly successful industry, home owners are taking notice. Check out these sleek options.

 

A zero-energy building is one that produces as much energy as it consumes, making it a net-zero energy property and eliminating energy bills for its owners. Although zero-energy homes and buildings are quite rare today, increasing concerns about energy waste have set the stage for a growing market.

Home buyers are beginning to take interest in proactively saving money on energy, and developers are taking note of the trend, too. It appears that most developers building zero-energy homes have only built a few custom properties, Other developers, though — such as KB Home and New Town Builders — have begun rolling out production-scale zero-energy model homes at prices only marginally higher than their non-zero-energy counterparts, making such the construction process more scalable and less expensive than custom plans.

 

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Vienna is home to the first hotel with a zero energy balance

Vienna is home to the first hotel with a zero energy balance | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Holidaying in Vienna and having nothing on your conscience more serious than a few too many slices of Sachertorte: you can do it if you stay at the Boutiquehotel Stadthalle, the world’s first city centre hotel with a zero energy balance certified by the European environmental quality mark.

All the energy the hotel complex requires is generated from renewable energy sources: a geothermal pump, a photovoltaic installation, solar panels and “active thermal slabs”: thermal activation of concrete and, in the near future, wind power. Rainwater is used for the toilets and to water the garden.

Other measures decrease the consumption of the hotel which is divided into two volumes: a renovated existing building and a new expansion built according to the dictates of passive construction with cement cladding...

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Nguyen Quang Thai's comment, October 6, 2014 8:15 AM
There are many benefits for the hotels running sustainability program such as cost savings, competitive advantages and protecting environment. Consider, Vienna hotel, is the best example for energy savings. Vienna hotel is using energy that is generated from renewable energy sources such as: a geothermal pump, a photovoltaic installation, solar panels and thermal activation of concrete and, in the near future, wind power. Rain water is also used for toilets and water the garden. These renewable energies help them save a lot of money for energy consumption. Therefore, they could gain more profit because the cost of selling a room is substantially decreased. On the other hand, the hotel could have the competitive advantage by running green program. As Alto’s general manager said that “45% of customer choose his hotel because of sustainability”. Instead of investing much money on marketing, he just focuses on the word-of-mouth marketing tool by their green program which results in 95% room rate occupancy for the last four years. However, changing customer habit is also one of the most challenges the hotels have been facing. As to influence their guests, they should use some fun posters which could inspire the customer to join their program and to do the right thing for their society.
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Net-Zero i-House Open for Tours in Georgia

Net-Zero i-House Open for Tours in Georgia | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

There's some great homes across the country being finished with the first i-House design.  This one, for instance, was built on a lot in Green Bridge Farm, an eco-friendly development of 25 lots in Effingham County, Georgia....

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Net Zero Buildings | archiCentral

Net Zero Buildings | archiCentral | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
The fact that the world is facing regarding global warming is something we should really be aware of, and act about.
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Net-zero Architecture: Morphosis' new Culver City office

Net-zero Architecture: Morphosis' new Culver City office | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

While Morphosis is known for their jagged steel surfaces and off-center forms, the firm has always been interested in sustainability. Its own new office in Culver City represents this philosophy,as the largest net-zero energy building in Los Angeles, and one of the greenest offices in the country.

The fairly rectangular structure, located just a few feet from the new light rail Expo Line’s elevated tracks in Culver City, gets most of its energy from photovoltaics—a 2,800-square-foot array sitting on top of a shaded parking canopy outside. But what makes it all work are the energy savings: It significantly reduces loads through several low-tech, high-tech, and even revolutionary techniques.


Visit the link for more images and details on the innovative sustainable strategies used in the design of this unique project.

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The new VanDusen Botanical Garden Visitor Centre by Perkins+Will

The new VanDusen Botanical Garden Visitor Centre by Perkins+Will | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
This is the VanDusen Botanical Garden Visitor Centre. It’s a new addition to the city of Vancouver, Canada.

The green building was designed by Perkins+Will and it bends beautifully in the surrounding landscape. The combination between modern architecture and nature is in constant balance and the design and the materials contribute to this effect. Not only that the visitor center is surrounded by nature but it’s also a green building designed with green building strategies to help it achieve net-zero energy...

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Passive House Retreat in Rhode Island

Passive House Retreat in Rhode Island | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Recently I realized that we neglected to follow up on a Passive House project discussed in pre-construction way back in March 2010.

Located in Little Compton, the 1,200 square-foot retreat has three bedrooms, one of which is a kid’s loft, two bathrooms, a tub room, and an open kitchen, dining and living area.

The handsome, gable-roofed structure saves energy with the combination of super insulation (R40 walls, R40 slab, and R70 roof), air sealing, high-performance windows, passive solar heating, a heat recovery ventilator, and an energy monitoring system, according a profile by ZED.

Other than LEED and Energy Star certification, Passive House certification is in progress.

Little Compton was finished with a modern Poggenpohl kitchen, contemporary furniture from Addo Novo, no- and low-VOC materials, paints, and sealants, and a whole-house ventilation system.

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Zero Net Energy School, Los Angeles, CA

Zero Net Energy School, Los Angeles, CA | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Holcim Awards Silver 2011 North America: The public school project is designed as a prototype to be built on multiple campuses throughout Los Angeles. Its aim is an economical, flexible and yet, in its spatial concept, ambitious design that can be adjusted to different pedagogical models and learning styles. The two-level building can accommodate up to 500 students and may also be reconfigured for other communal functions. The sustainability concept intends to reach a net zero energy building standard and achieve LEED Platinum rating.

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Hawaii Preparatory Academy Energy Lab — Living Building Challenge

Hawaii Preparatory Academy Energy Lab — Living Building Challenge | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Conceived as a high school science building dedicated to the study of alternative energy, the new Energy Lab at Hawaii Preparatory Academy functions as a zero-net-energy, fully sustainable building.
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