Earth Day 2012 / by Modern Richmond

For Earth Day, we are excited to share a collection of sustainable design resources, examples of modern sustainable architecture, and a few breathtaking views of our planet.  Enjoy.

Sustainable Design Resources

Inhabitat - An excellent blog "devoted to the future of design, tracking the innovations in technology, practices and materials that are pushing architecture and home design towards a smarter and more sustainable future."  You'll find frequent posts covering diverse topics including architecture, design, products, technology and renewable energy.




Treehugger - A part of the larger Discovery network, the website is a "leading media outlet dedicated to driving sustainability mainstream. Partial to a modern aesthetic, we strive to be a one-stop shop for green news, solutions, and product information."  Follow them on Twitter for a frequent dose of all things green and sustainable.




Jetson Green - With a focus on sustainable residential design, Jetson Green seeks "to enhance homes (and the lives of people in them) with beautiful design, smart construction, resource conservation, energy efficiency, water savings, healthy air, green technology, and renewable energy."  In a town like Richmond with a housing stock dating back centuries, their strategies for green renovations are worth checking out.


Building Green - The publishers of Environmental Building News, Building Green is "committed to providing accurate, unbiased, and timely information designed to help building-industry professionals and policy makers improve the environmental performance, and reduce the adverse impacts, of buildings."  Through their various print and online publications, you will find a wealth of information on the latest products, strategies and technologies for designing more environmentally responsible buildings.



Passive House Institute - With origins in Germany and the European Union, the Passive House Building Energy standard has been gaining steadily in the US.  The organization offers design guidelines, training and other services.  And who wouldn't mind reducing their energy bills by 90%?





USGBC - Through a network of nationwide chapters, the US Green Building Council is "committed to a prosperous and sustainable future through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings."  The USGBC administers the LEED program, which provides a set of metrics and certifications for the construction and renovation of buildings.  Locally, the James River Green Building Council hosts lectures, workshops and competitions designed to promote sustainable practices in Central Virginia.



2012 COTE Awards - The America Institue of Architects' Committee on the Environment (COTE) announced its top 10 sustainable projects for 2012.  With a leaning towards institutional projects, all are worth a look.





ecoMOD - Closer to home, the ecoMOD program "is a research and educational project at the University of Virginia, striving to create sustainable, prefab housing units in partnership with affordable housing organizations."  With projects in Jamaica, Charlottesville and SW Virginia, the program offers students a set of practical experiences outside the normal bounds of architecture school.




Sustainable Architecture

Passive House - Karawitz Architecture - photo © Karawitz Architecture

Harpoon House - Design for Occupancy - photo © Matt Kirkpatrick

Orange Grove Apartments - Brooks & Scarpa - photo © Marvin Rand

Shipping Container House - Studio H:T Architecture - photo © Braden Gumen

Eco-sustainable House - Djuric-Tardio Architectes - photo - © Clément Guillaume

Sneeoosh Cabin - zeroplus architects - photo © zeroplus architects

  New Norris House - UT Knoxville College of Architecture + Design - photo © Ken McCown

Hover House 3 - Glen Irani Architects - photo courtesy Glen Irani Architects

SUSTAIN THE EARTH - It's pretty great

Reflections - © Kim Høltermand

 © Michael Nager

© De Vetpan Studios

 © flickr user Cubagallery