Heather Gayle Holdridge's picture

Natural Ventilation Basics

Natural ventilation is a great strategy for thermal comfort and saving energy in a lot of the climates we work in. We have compiled some tips for how to design for optimum natural ventilation.
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Beyond LEED Symposium - Opening Remarks by David Lake

BEYOND LEED REGENERATIVE DESIGN: A SYMPOSIUM JANUARY 27 + 28, 2012 Friday, January 27, 2012 Beyond LEED Session Beyond LEED. EVOLVED. Following previous discussions with Bob Harris (Lake|Flato) and Bob Berkebile (BNIM), a few questions kept coming to mind: Why aren’t there more living buildings? Why are they NOT being pursued, built and dreamt about? USGBC and LEED have been a transformative force for the good. In one decade, we have witnessed unparalleled changes in the building industry with 200,000 LEED accredited professionals and 28,000 certified LEED buildings. However, is this good...
Heather Gayle Holdridge's picture

Effective Apertures, WWRs, and VLTs, Oh My!

We performed some energy modeling studies a few years ago to determine what the ideal effective aperture is for each climate we work in. We were surprised to find that because energy codes and window manufacturers are tightening up on glazing solar heat gain performance, code-minimum windows do not allow for passive solar heating benefits. This means that even in northern climates where buildings could benefit from southern heat gain, the window code will not allow the solar heat gain coefficient to be high enough to perform this way. You can read more about the study and our findings in this...
Heather Gayle Holdridge's picture

Miller Porch House is LEED Silver

The first LEED project of 2012 has arrived! We just received the official word from USGBC that Miller Porch House earned LEED Silver. This is our 12th LEED project to date. Congratulations to the project team, and special thanks to Tenna who did the heavy lifting on the LEED documentation.
jenniferyoung's picture

Rainwater Calculator

A SIMPLE RAINWATER CALCULATOR to help you estimate how much water you can potentially collect and how much water your design requires (both indoor and outdoor). As you progress through design there are other consultants who will likely provide input such as the landscape architect, irrigation designer, and civil engineer.
jenniferyoung's picture

Lessons Learned on a LEED Platinum Home

At the TSA Convention this year I was one of the presenters in a session called Lessons Learned on Two LEED Platinum Homes . This short document highlights a few key lessons from this LEED Platinum Home
jenniferyoung's picture

Practicing Construction Waste Management

We hired Greenstone Industries of San Antonio to manage the construction waste on one of our residential projects that received LEED Platinum certification last year. By doing so, we diverted 88% of construction waste from the landfill. The other amazing part is that this service cost a third less than a typical dumpster service which would have delivered 100% to the landfill. Greenstone built these recycle bins from old pallets to separate the different kinds of waste.
jenniferyoung's picture

Rainwater Harvesting 101

Wondering how to integrate rainwater harvesting into a current or future project? Follow this link for a few tips from the folks at Lake Flato... RainwaterHarvesting101.pdf ...stay tuned for a calculator that will help you figure all this out, as well as lessons learned on a residential system that uses rainwater for 100% of its potable water needs!
Heather Gayle Holdridge's picture

The BIg Mistakes Happen on the First Day

That's why it's important to start the energy model early. We have developed a process for creating an early-stage energy model using very basic, conceptual information about a design. We call it an "energy snapshot." The project manager fills out this spreadsheet about their project and sends it to me: I input this information into an energy simulation tool such as REM Rate (residential) or eQUEST (commercial) along with some reasonable assumptions based on building systems our firm typically utilizes and a few minutes later . . . An energy model is born. This model will be refined...
Heather Gayle Holdridge's picture

Greenbuild 2012 Highlights

Tenna, and I traveled to Toronto earlier this month for Greenbuild 2012 . Here are some highlights from our trip: Biophilic Design: The Architecture of Life was featured at the Greenbuild Film Festival. A few folks from our firm were filmed for this movie and Ted, Bob, Roy, Tenna, Bill, and I made the final cut! BuildingGreen unveiled their Top 10 Green Building Products for 2012 . A few products we have enjoyed including in our projects made the list, such as the Ritter XL solar thermal and Mitsubishi ductless heat pump systems. Bob was interviewed at the GreenSource expo hall booth as part...