Creativity really turns my crank. And apart from the obvious benefits of building green and using green building materials like bamboo flooring, one of the things that comes out of this shift in consciousness when it comes to designing and building homes is how architects and interior designers are applying ideas that I as a layman can only describe as supercool.
Take a look at this article about a green building project in Seattle that uses all kinds of innovative ideas that make it a property which ‘responds to the surrounding environment’. That is, the property is incorporated into its surroundings, rather than just being slapped on a piece of land. For instance, the home has what they’ve called a rainwater harvesting system, which basically funnels rainwater (and remember, this is Seattle…) into large concrete tanks. From here, the rainwater is plumbed into the house, used for toilets and for laundry. The tanks are tastefully integrated into the design of the home, less water is used for amenities, and the water bill for the residents is significantly lowered too – everybody wins. Genius. Supercool.
The design utilizes other green building practices too: natural daylight enabled by the layout, reclaimed materials (doors, fixtures, etc), and of course bamboo floors which we’ve talked about at length on this here blog – fast growing, durable, best use of raw materials, etc, etc. Of course, the function enabled by the design doesn’t sacrifice on visual results. Actually, the two seem to work in conjunction with the other. Sustainability may be the goal, but I love that the visual effect pans out to be pretty impressive too. I only hope that some of these ideas hit the mainstream too.
The company responsible for the design is Fivedotdesignbuild.com, a Seattle firm who make sustainability a specialty.
image of ‘The Orchard’ courtesy of seattlepi.nwsource.com