Complications of Sustainability Requirements

What could possibly go wrong?

Sustainable Design - What's the Strategy?

A program at the Philadelphia AIA Design on the Delaware annual conference last week, discussed the legal aspects of green building. The panelists used an outlandish hypothetical case to explore where the design pitfalls may lie. Issues ignored by the..

Can Goals Be Requirements?

I just completed review of a new document that the Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) will be publishing soon: The CSI Sustainable Design and Construction Practice Guide, one of a series of practice guides. The guide references the CSI flagship..

Solar Arrays and Net Zero Buildings

I attended a presentation on an office building designed to meet the Living Building Challenge. One of the design concepts was to achieve net zero energy (metered) for the completed design. This means that the metered power sent to the utility grid from..

What's Wrong with This Picture?

Have you ever seen a built detail, scratched your head, and wondered: "What were they thinking?" There are 4 steps that can be taken to help prevent "silly" mistakes from occurring on construction projects: Quality Assurance Reviews, Shop Drawing..

Chemical Masonry Cleaning

How can you make sure you get that "like new" look for the completed masonry? Detergent washing is only removing the surface dirt - not the right result. Chemical masonry cleaning is a necessary evil in new construction. It's not as bad as you might..

Please. Energy is Not Renewable

Can we please stop calling solar, wind, and other LEED and government promoted energy sources "renewable?"

BUILDING PRODUCTS MADE FROM MUSHROOMS!?

What would you think of a product that was made from agricultural byproducts and mushrooms that had similar characteristics of expanded polystyrene including insulating values and able to achieve a Class 1 flame spread rating that was 100% natural,..

Naturally Decay Resistant Wood

Wood's natural decay resistance is dependent on species selection and the part of the tree that is used. Tropical rainforest species are not required for durable wood in exterior applications. Learn what US native species are sustainable alternatives and..

Brick - Solid or Hollow - Why Choose?

Brick selection is usually based on aesthetic factors, first, such as size, color, and texture. These aesthetic factors can dramatically affect the perception of a completed building. For designers making the aesthetic selections, there is usually little..

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