I could write a long, long essay on development impact. According to Wikipedia, low impact development, which is of particular interest to our eco-friendly clients, involves a land planning and engineering design approach to managing stormwater runoff. LID emphasizes conservation and use of on-site natural features to protect water quality. This approach implements engineered small-scale hydrologic controls to replicate the pre-development hydrologic regime of watersheds through infiltrating, filtering, storing, evaporating, and detaining runoff close to its source.
And that would leave out another long, long essay on "lean construction"...but, hold the phone...this post is part of a series on eco- communities and green-built homes, so today I will focus on just one home (see photo ) as an example of masterful LID and construction.
Masterful LID and Construction
It's a new WNC HealthyBuillt® Home I visited recently as part of a site evaluation team for NLJ. This home is on a city lot subdivided in the early 1900's. Mature trees, providing much appreciated shade during the heat wave we are having, is just a couple minutes from downtown. Walkable, bike-easy tree-lined streets with light traffic mean a happy family could live in this home and walk to everything that they need.
It was built on a vacant city lot using a house plan that allowed the eco-savvy builder to disturb as little of the site as possible. When interviewed, that builder told me, "The lot had several beautiful mature trees that we were able to save. Since the lot was attached to an old home originally, there were some smaller trees and Rhododendron bushes that we dug up and transplanted into the topsoil we scraped off of the building site. We have since replanted these plants back into our landscaping."
He must have seen that I was impressed, because he continued, proudly, " We always recycle as many building materials as possible. We go as far as to separate and haul all non-treated wood to be chipped into mulch at the landfill. As far as locally and regionally harvested materials; the wood siding on the upper part of the house is locally harvested, milled, and planed."
Low impact design and construction features and benefits include:
- A front porch where huge locust posts were taken off of a future building site
- A front porch where decking was locally harvested and milled
- Oak flooring, regionally harvested
- Stone for the front steps and back patio, regionally harvested,
- Tim in the entire house, locally harvested and milled cherry
- Sealer used on all trim and siding, locally produced rainforest sealer
HEY! What's not to like?
...Up next , more you will like... a post about Energy and Resource Efficiency
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