Developments that Combine the Best of the Past, Present and Future
There’s nothing like learning from experience, including the experience of others. I’m excited to see design/build firms embracing the concept of neighborhoods of sustainably built, energy-efficient homes that rely on renewable energy resources. It’s a concept I believe in and one that I think could work in our area, just as it has in greater Salt Lake City, Utah. At a conference last year, I met a dynamic duo and was inspired by their passion, ingenuity and track record for creating developments of net zero energy homes powered by the sun.
So far, Redfish Builders, in partnership with Innovative Development Group, has built three Living Zenith communities. Each community of homes is unique, blending beautifully into its natural surroundings as well as being compatible with the design sensibilities of the area. Key commonalities in these three communities include onsite photovoltaic (solar) with storage, air filtration systems and HRV, smart technologies that enable remote control of the home’s settings and sustainable design/build practices and materials. Little but important details like a communal garden bring back thoughts of the days when we actually knew, communicated and shared with our neighbors. And they’re strategically located within walking or biking—forms of travel with zero carbon emissions—distance of services, shops, restaurants and entertainment.
All of that said, I think this concept is worthy of further exploration. And it’s always good to see the strides other design/build firms are making toward a more planet-friendly built environment. In my opinion, it’s our responsibility to build this way. There’s no end to what we can learn when we keep our eyes, minds and hearts open.