Mountain Architects : how to accomplish green design, naturally.
Mountain architects and green architecture
With all the talk about Green Design and Green Architecture and eco-friendly new home design and Green House Plans these days, many people’s heads are spinning. What’s it all mean? What to do? Rand Soellner AIA, one of the world’s leading mountain architects has the answer for those wanting green home plans for their mountain homes. What is it? Green residential design systems and material choices made possible by mountain architects.
For instance, one of the key aspects to sustainable architecture is embodied energy. The more technology and energy that has to be applied to create a given material or building system the higher the embodied energy. The higher the embodied energy score, the less “green” a material or system is. Mountain architects help you with this by including low-embodied energy elements like natural boulders and rocks, timbers, wood structural systems, wood siding and flooring, high insulation values, tighter construction methods and shading of glass areas in warmer months.
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Mountain architects take CEUs.
As a licensed professionals, mountain architects are required to take continuing education courses, including on Sustainable Design, as administered by NCARB (National Council of Architectural Registration Boards). A licensed architect has to pass a test for each course taken. Also, as a member of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), mountain architects must take continuing education courses on SD (Sustainable Design), which for us, is sustainable architecture. Again, a licensed architect has to pass a test for each course. Furthermore, mountain architectural companies like Rand Soellner have been designing energy-efficient and ecologically sensitive projects for decades, including homes that were awarded Energy Conservation Awards from major power companies (such as Florida Power Corporation) as long ago as 1982, long before “green” became a household word. Today’s licensed mountain architects have a great deal of training and experience.
Soellner also performed the Site Selection Analysis, Programming, Master Site Planning and Concept Design for the new Florida Solar Energy Center in the late 1980s. There’s some real expertise here, that’s been accumulated over decades.
In addition, Soellner was called in multiple times to fix “sick” buildings for a major SE USA county whose structures had moisture penetration problems (Soellner was not the original architect, but was called in to help by diagnosing and solving the problems). What does this have to do with Green Architecture? Well, if you consider a healthy home and building to be part of the Green movement (and Rand Soellner does), then having a healthy home, with cleaner air to breathe and less materials off-gassing is part of the equation. “Green” means many things to different people. Soellner views energy architecture, environmentalism and healthy design in a holistic context, where everything is connected to everything else. For instance, just the decision to go with a wood structure actually Contains CO2. How? Well, it turns out that during photosynthesis, plants, including trees, absorb carbon dioxide and exhale oxygen. If the plants decompose, or are burned, they release the CO2 that they contain. However, as long as the wood is put to good purpose, like holding up a house, the CO2 remains contained. Spread out over the entire planet, that’s a lot of carbon dioxide that we humans can help keep contained inside structural wood for our houses. And that’s a benefit for reducing greenhouse gases, and requires less energy to produce the wood products that aluminum and other higher embodied energy materials. And mountain designers use lots of wood.
Mountain architects and the mountains.
This is what mountain architects design for: view of the mountains. That is why people want to live in the mountains. Mountain architects have a job to do: capture those views. Once that is accomplished, other things are details. This healthy and enjoyable respect for our mountain views is what inspires us to protect them, make national parks of them and enshrine them within conservation easements.
Mountain Architects + Green Design = Green Home Architects
One of the things to be cautious of regarding Green Design and Green Architecture, is that it is not like selecting a different paint color. There can be substantial additional initial costs associated with going really “green.” These costs can amount to 5% to 15% more or less of the capital expense of construction. Rand Soellner home architects have methods like “ Going Green 4 Less .” Mountain architects design philosophies focus on judicious use of more effective insulation products, for instance, that allow you to increase your energy efficiency home design for only pennies per square foot. There are many other items as well. Give Rand Soellner’s mountain architects a try. To discover how he can help you in your quest for Green Design and Green Architecture: Rand Soellner Architect: 828-269-9046 e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
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GREEN HOME DESIGN UNIVERSITY QUESTIONS, for those of you taking Rand Soellner’s course of green instruction: about the above subject:
1. All of the materials below have Low embodied energy Except?
a. natural boulders and rocks from the locale of the project
b. aluminum siding
d. wood siding and wood flooring
2. By law, licensed architects have to have?
a. yearly physicals.
b. croquet mallets.
c. CEUs (Continuing Education Units).
d. degrees in oil industry technology.
3. Why do many people want to live in mountainous regions?
a. the views.
b. high winds.
c. interesting roads.
If you are continuing in your Green Home Design University course to the next level,
Favorite this page now, by clicking on your “Favorites” menu choice in the upper left of your Windows Internet Explorer window,
then click here: Green home analysis to go to the next level 9.
1. b., 2. c., 3. a.