Category Archives: Energy Efficiency

Construction Update: Contemporary Proud Green Home at Serenbe

WEEK 5: Jodi and I spent a day last week at Serenbe, which included a mandatory stop at the Blue Eyed Daisy. Aside from that, our main purpose was to check-in on the construction of the Contemporary Proud Green Home being built by Luis Imery and his crew at The Imery Group, and they’re moving right […]

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Proud Green Home at Serenbe Construction Update: Installing the Footings

WEEK 2: Construction is underway at the Proud Green Home at Serenbe, and the concrete footings have been poured! Next up…concrete stem walls, which happens tomorrow! After that, we’re pouring the slab-on-grade. Though we considered many good strategies to control heat, moisture and air, here is the foundation detail we are using. Here are some photos […]

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Designing High Performance Homes is Sketchy Business

Architects love to sketch! No matter how advanced, or how user friendly software programs get, we will probably always have a roll of tracing paper, a sketchbook, a napkin or even an iPhone app close by to lay down our ideas on. We can’t help it! A Higher Performance Sketching the designs for this home (right), the […]

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Improved Energy Codes, Diminishing Return, & a New Performance Baseline

It wasn’t long ago that the EPA’s ENERGY STAR New Homes Program created an uproar in the residential building community by releasing Version 3.0 of it’s volunteer 3rd party verification program. One of the biggest crack downs in the new version was it’s requirement for HVAC Contractors to test and verify their installations of the heating […]

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ENERGY STAR Certified Home in Grant Park – Atlanta, GA

Recently, this house in the historic district of Grant Park, Atlanta, was certified through the ENERGY STAR New Homes program at the EPA. The final inspection revealed an air tightness of 0.77 ach50, which is near the maximum acceptable air infiltration level of the aggressive Passive House program (0.6 ach50). The final HERS Index was around 64, which means (among other […]

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New Project (Renovation): Bar Antico – Italian Cafe with High Performance Twist

We have obained the permit from the City of Atlanta for the renovation and addition of this brick building in the “West Side” neighborhood of Home Park. Before demolition began, the building was a single-family home, and next to it was the parking for one of the busiest pizza joints in the country, Antico Pizza. […]

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Designing for High Performance: Slab-On-Grade, Part III – Controlling Air Flow

In an earlier post, I talked about 3 of the most important strategies for making a home energy efficient. They were; 1. Air sealing, 2. Air sealing and 3. Air sealing. Air sealed, or tight, homes do a better job at containing the conditioned air coming from the HVAC system where it belongs…inside. Tight homes […]

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Part II: Designing for High Performance, Controlling Heat Flow in Slab-On-Grade

In Part I of this series on designing for high performance, we discussed the control of moisture flow at foundations. We showed you this detail (below) from the Proud Green Home at Serenbe and reviewed the practices that we and the builder are employing for keeping unwanted moisture out of the building. Looking back, we said the […]

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Designing for High Performance: Slab-On-Grade, Part I – Controlling Moisture Flow

We’re just a few weeks away from a computer generated, self-guided interactive virtual tour of the Proud Green Home at Serenbe, a design-build collaboration with The Imery Group. We’re using REVIT software to generate the 3D model, then  VIMTREK will animate the tour. What you will see in the tour is the home’s modern design, its 3 bedrooms […]

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The 3 Most Important Strategies to Achieve an Energy Efficient Home

Your House Leaks. Period. It doesn’t matter if you’re living in a Passive House home or a grass hut. Your house leaks air both in and out through the many cracks in the walls, ceilings, floors, etc. In a Passive House the size and number of cracks are kept to a minimum. In a grass […]

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