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Sustainability

— Environment

Energy-producing Honda Smart Home gives more than it takes

By - April 1, 2014 13 Pictures
With homes and light-vehicles accounting for roughly 44 percent of total greenhouse gases emitted in the US, neutralizing these emissions would certainly go a long way towards a clean energy future. What if these sources of pollution could not only be nullified, but play an active role in reducing our environmental footprint? Such is the thinking behind the Honda Smart Home US unveiled last week, which generates enough solar energy to power both car and home, with a little left over to feed back into the grid. Read More
— Architecture

Seattle's first Passive House "could be heated with a hairdryer"

By - March 28, 2014 14 Pictures
Well, it could theoretically be heated by a hairdryer, at least. While that attention-grabbing headline needn't be taken too literally (it appears to refer to the equivalent energy required for heating), in Park Passive House, NK Architects has produced an energy-efficient and attractive modern family home. It also happens to be Seattle's first certified Passive House, and so will hopefully provide inspiration for more similarly efficient homes to be built in its wake. Read More
— Around The Home

Valcucine's open-source project to inspire sustainable kitchen designs

By - March 25, 2014 9 Pictures
Italian design firm Valcucine is looking to turn its showroom at next month's Milan Design Week into a collaborative space by seeking out 10 budding designers to workshop sustainable modifications to its Meccanica kitchen concept. The "Kitchen Becomes Open!" project is set to take place over six days and will fundamentally be an open-source venture from start to finish. Participants will work with a team of experts to develop ideas and ultimately make them freely available for distribution and modification. Read More
— Architecture

At the Autostadt, architect J Mayer H combines motion and sustainability

By - March 24, 2014 9 Pictures
If you’re interested in seeing the latest, most advanced car designs while also taking in some modern art and learning about sustainability, then you might want to stop in at the Autostadt in Wolfsburg, Germany. The museum-showroom-education complex is now also home to the "MobiVersum," by Jürgen Mayer H. The new interactive sculptural installation by the Berlin-based architect is made up of a cluster of abstract shapes that resembles an architectural playground, but is meant to offer lessons in motion and sustainability. Read More
— Architecture

Orchid House concept inspired by Taiwan's greenhouse technologies

By - March 17, 2014 12 Pictures
In high-density areas like the Taiwanese capital of Taipei, people have long looked to expand vertically to make use of the limited land, resulting in a lack of vegetation, high humidity and high energy usage. According to Unicode, a team of Taiwanese architects and designers, 50 percent of the county's housing constructions are either common multiple-story rowhouses or larger duplex apartment buildings, many of which have illegal makeshift shelters on their rooftops to provide extra living space. Unicode has developed a concept house which would give these shelters a greenhouse-inspired makeover, shifting reliance to renewable energy sources and improving Taipei's sustainability in the process. Read More
— Architecture

Solar-panel skin could make Dutch homes energy neutral

By - March 5, 2014 8 Pictures
Around 60 percent of the homes in the Netherlands are row house terraces, with around a quarter of those built in the post-war period. While these constructions characterize much of the Dutch urban landscape, they weren't exactly built with energy efficiency as their first priority. A team of Delft University students has developed a concept for a solar-powered skin designed to optimize energy usage, while also preserving this classic Dutch architecture. Read More
— Environment

The Green Network: How Hamburg could be car-free in 20 years

By - March 4, 2014 5 Pictures
Its hard to imagine a major metropolis devoid of cars in any country, let alone in the home of celebrated brands like Mercedes-Benz and BMW. Germany's affection for all things automotive may be in for a shake up however, with the city of Hamburg setting the wheels in motion for its "Green Network," a bold plan make cars an optional mode of transport in the city within 15-20 years. Read More
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