WWAT: Lemon Road House project; building a sustainable, modest home
sckree at yahoo.com
Fri Jul 25 01:14:38 CDT 2008
We want to show people in this neighborhood and in the region, that a modest house can be built that is energy efficient, uses recycled materials, is designed to compliment the ecology of the site, and minimizes waste and processing. George and I don't have the expertise to design such a building or to create an effective educational tool out of the 'reconstruction' of the house. We will also need support from grants, since we can only contribute the amount we have saved up for a modest house.
We are bringing in different groups/interest, each with a stake in the ideas we want to communicate. This will include representatives of the industry, local and state governments, environmental non-profits, and Evergreen students and faculty.
There is much more we would like to do with the Lemon Road House
Project, than simply market 'green products'. We realize that there is a handful of "green homes" in the area, built and promoted by the building industry. Our proposed project stands apart because it is about education, not marketing. The best possible scenario for this project includes:
1.) demonstrating how a house can be 'deconstructed' so that waste is minimized and recycling maximized;
2.) designing the site so that it supports a sustainable lifestyle;
3.) designing and building a very energy efficient, durable, low-impact house;
4.) habitat restoration and preservation of private woodlands;
5.) reestablishing the natural vegetation in the yard, including sustainable ideas in our landscape management and a garden;
6.) a solid community education program with the involvement of the media.
Ideally we would like to demonstrate that NOT ALL of the technology that goes with 'energy efficiency and sustainable living' is affordable ONLY to wealthier homeowners.
This is not an exhaustive list of our ideas nor are our ideas set in stone. The more we learn about 'sustainable living' possibilities, the more ideas we have and the more excited we become.
We are very open to design ideas. We are not building a home to reflect our personalities or to make a name for ourselves, but rather to reflect the ecology of the site and to promote sustainability. We have a flexible time frame, leaving the possibility for several semesters of academic activities.
We are putting together a community awareness program for
> sustainable home building (and remodeling in the South Bay
> area of Olympia. Washington (Thurston County). The focus of the
> program will be the deconstruction of an old house and the
> reconstruction of a small, low to modest income,
> sustainable home. The project is called the 'Lemon
> Road House Project.'
> The Lemon Road House project is loosely defined and its
> focus will be crystallized according to the needs of the
> team members. In brief, we want to reconstruct an old
> house, using the most sustainable design available, using
> recycled and biodegradable products to the extent possible,
> and minimizing waste in the deconstruction of the old house
> and construction of a new one. We want to use this project
> as a way to educate the neighborhood and community at large
> about the “green” (and sustainable) options available
> when they remodel or build new homes. While there are
> several examples of “green buildings” the general
> conception is that ‘green options’ are not currently
> available for people with modest or low income.
> The information of ‘sustainable practices and design’
> has been made widely available to individuals and companies
> involved in the building industry; but, there is no
> clearinghouse of information readily available to the
> average citizen. There is little community awareness about
> sustainable living. When we requested information from
> state agencies about building a low cost green, sustainable
> house, we were simply given a list of businesses we can
> contact. We want homeowners to be educated about
> sustainable building, not simply sold green building
> products and services.
> The basic needs of this Lemon Road House Project are 1) a
> house and property to exhibit examples of sustainable
> decisions; 2) a community program to let homeowners in this
> neighborhood, and the larger community, know about options
> they have and the long term consequences of their choices;
> 3.) a builder and architect to help design and build the
> “sustainable house.” 4.) labor and 5.) money, of
> We also want to include the next generation of
> professionals in the industry. We are working with
> Evergreen State College, which has adopted an overall theme
> of “sustainable building and practices” both in the
> administration of the college and in the academic programs.
> The students we have begun working with are very
> enthusiastic, and have offered free labor. We hope that
> the educational aspects of this project will be used to
> open the minds of both the consumers and the suppliers.
> The house we plan to reconstruct is 60 years old. It is on
> a parcel of land approximately 1.5 acres in size and adjoins
> a 3-acre parcel of wooded land. The location of the Lemon
> Road House is another factor driving us to educate the
> community about green building and sustainable practices.
> The neighborhood is only a fifteen-minute drive from
> downtown Olympia, but is very rural in nature. There are
> large sections of wooded lands with spiring cedar, maple,
> and fir trees. The undergrowth on the property we are
> working with is a sea of ferns. Many of the trees next to
> the older houses are close to 100 years old. Families have
> kept their land for 3 or 4 generations, which has slowed
> down the building of large sterile subdivisions. But the
> next generation seems to be selling off the land for
> development. We have seen beautiful parcels of wooded
> lands clear-cut and paved over. The Lemon Road Project is
> in part an attempt to protect the natural habitat
> from careless development.
> To the point of money, we have a fund of $50,000 to
> reconstruct the Lemon Road House. We are searching for the
> most energy efficient designs/practices for the building,
> but because ‘sustainable practices’ are not the norm
> (as we hope them to become), we realize that we will need
> to obtain additional money through grants and to encourage
> the donation of goods and services to the extent possible.
> Possible grant programs include the U.S. Department of
> Energy Building Challenge, Washington State Dept. of
> Community, Trade and Economics’ House Trust Funds, US EPA
> community organization grants, and educational grants made
> available by a wide range of organizations and agencies.
> The funding mechanisms, and the success for application of
> funds, will depend largely on team members and their
> perspective goals and objectives.
> We are in the beginning of this process—-trying to
> identify the people, companies and agencies we want to work
> with. We want to put together a team including
> representatives of industry, students, community
> organizations, and local and federal government agency
> personnel. We are open to all alternatives and want to
> focus the project to best accommodate the needs of team
> We hope that you find the possibilities of the Lemon Road
> House Project inspiring and exciting, and that you will
> want to participate.
> Even if you do not want to participate directly, we would
> appreciate any information about people to contact and
> funding mechanisms that you can provide.
> Please respond and let us know your views on the Lemon Road
> House project and how you can be involved.
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