Spring 2011 – Post your “BUILDING & Sustainable Architecture ” topical homework here:

  • Find and read an article (online or in print) and post a link or citation on your topic, with a sentence or two summarizing the most useful points, for at least one item per class meeting.
  • You may post additional links (with or without summaries) for some extra credit.
  • Note any important points from your book reading that connect with or inform your research topic.
  • Folks on other topic teams are welcome to make comments, suggest links, or anything else that would be helpful to this team (this will also earn you some extra credit).

    70 Responses to “BUILDING”

    1. zotique Says:

      This is a pretty good example of what I think is the most crucial part of responsible building, the recycling processes.


    2. zotique Says:


      Hey mike were you talking about Tom Sullivan of sunhydro when you told me about the east coast hydrogen highway?

    3. zotique Says:


      Yo guys i was telling y’all about this type of rain catchment system and this is an article about a guy who installed one in Capitola. I think this is the best catchment system available for most family homes because of it takes up an invisible amount of space!

      1. zotique Says:

        Here are a few more projects done using the same system as Bruce Arthur of Capitola:

    4. josephcrum Says:

      I was reading about heat islands caused from compact city buildings
      Communities can take a number of common-sense measures to reduce the effects of summertime heat islands. This website provides information on the heat island effect, its impacts, and the strategies that communities can take to reduce urban temperatures.

      1. zotique Says:

        Reduce heat island effects by being cool!

    5. kevinbice Says:

      This is like a luxury monolithic dome. It’s got all kinds of nifty things about it. Passive-Solar, geothermal, materials, adaptability, etc.

      1. zotique Says:

        The white panel roofing on “the pearl” is constructed with photovoltaic solar panelling. I was unfamiliar with these and found a really detailed paper on different variables in using these, here’s the link if you’re into to it enough,

        Click to access Measured_Performance.pdf

        I like the idea of these a lot so i found a paper on cost-benefit analysis too check up on them.

        Click to access Leena.pdf

        This paper is long too. It does a detailed analysis for a 20,000 sqft roof at Kipps Elementary School in Virginia. There are a lot of variables and they conclude that it wouldn’t be feasible for this school because rebates are insufficient and also because the peak energy use for the school happens in the morning when the photovoltaic grid is producing the least. My question that I havent answered about these silicon solar building panels is what is their energy storing capability?

    6. mtcaldwell Says:

      Coming up June 22-24 at Moscone Center, San Francisco:
      Pacific Coast Builders Conference.

      I have gone for several years.
      Lectures and exibits on the latest in all facets of building, commercial and residential. Latest techniques, tools, styles, financing, products. You can go on the cheap to the exhibits only $50 for 3 days or even for free by wangling a pass from an exhibitor.
      1. Go to the website: http://www.pcbc.com
      2. Look at exhitor list
      3. Find a candidate and send them an email
      4. State you are a student with a building project and ask if they have an exibit pass.
      5. They can send you a code to register.

      This is an opportunity to see it all:

      * windows
      * walls
      * foundations
      * roofs
      * tools
      * heating
      * cooling
      * appliances

      The Craftsman kitchen with all stainless diamond stamped steel appliances is great if
      you like running board decor.

      Lots of solar too.

    7. mtcaldwell Says:

      Building Team: Opps! Library not open on this Monday! Hope you didn’g find out the hard way. I wondered why the parking was so easy. We need to try another day. Suggestions?

      1. kevinbice Says:

        Friday, noon, at the Farm Cafe near Cabrillo. Does that work?

    8. zotique Says:


      I think that a manifesto such as this with a sustainable building overview plus some of our own exciting, personal-interest, building ideas would be a good format for our topic presentation. whatcha think?

    9. zotique Says:

      Here is a link to the LEED certification system. http://www.leeduser.com/leed-credits
      I think it is very noteworthy that the qualifications for LEED credits are rather vague and ask for a “half-istic” approach rather than a holistic approach. For example the criteria for receiving LEED credits for “Protecting or Restoring the Habitat” require that “If your site has been previously developed, you must protect or restore a portion of the site—50% of the total area minus the building footprint.” Which could actually be called the “1/4-istic” approach if the building footprint takes up 50% of the total area. The building footprint takes up 50% of the total building site area in most neighborhoods when you think about it.

      1. zotique Says:

        I am not saying that the LEED certification criteria are terrible. I think it is good that by being vague about the criteria builders can receive and pursue LEED certs for a variety of things. I wanted to point out that the vagueness in criteria allows the wiggle room necessary for “greenwashing”- fake environmentalism. Would y’all agree?

    10. mtcaldwell Says:

      The Presentation Center (www.presentationcenter.org) located near Lexington Reservoir on Bear Creek Road is a retreat for individuals and groups. The center showcases sustainable design such as rain catchment and renewable building products such as bamboo tiles and grain hull countertops. They use passive solar for heating the buildings and swimmming pool. The Center is open to the public and groups can get a tour of the facilities.

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