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Magazine for integrated high-performance building & sustainable design & construction.

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The Top 100 Green Design Firms Interest in sustainable design has been building over the past 10 years and continues to gain momentum. Further, market sectors that once looked askance at the notion of green building as an unnecessary up-front capital expense now are embracing the long-term value of energy savings promised by sustainability. However, the market for sustainable design has not yet reached the saturation point in the construction industry, so a downturn in a few key sectors can affect the overall market. This state of affairs can be seen in the results of ENR's Top 100 Green Design Firms list. As a group, the Top 100 generated $4.18 billion in design revenue in 2012 from projects registered with and actively seeking certification from third-party ratings groups under objective sustainable-design standards, such as the U.S. Green Building Council's (USGBC) Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards. The table below shows only rankings and firm name.

AEC Daily Lofted Forest Home: Organic Curves & Natural Materials Good things come to those who wait – particularly in a work of uniquely detailed and highly curved architecture. Nearly a decade in the making, this structure by Robert Harvey Oshatz is much like a tree house – lofted toward the top of the canopy around it – only bigger, grander, more complex and curved than most any tree house in the world. The perimeter of the structure is pushed out into the forest around it, curving in and out to create views as well as a sense of intimacy with the coniferous and deciduous tree cover. The wood and metal detailing is incredible in its variety and customization – each piece designed to fit a particular form and function. Wood and stone carry naturalistic themes from the outside in and even the metal looks naturally rusted. The curved, organic mix of materials continues to the interior of this elevated forest home – a conceptual play on the fluidity and complexity of music (the source of inspiration for the architect and client in the design).

Real Life LEED: 95+ FREE Online LEED CMP Continuing Education (CE) Hours or How I learned to stop worrying and just self report One of the biggest initial complaints about the new LEED Credentialing Maintenance Program (CMP) was that people who sign up were going to have a pay substantial sums to get their Continuing Education (CE) hours. While free opportunities are still not widespread, there are now enough free resources out there on the internets to get you through about 6 years worth of hours. I'm talking specifically about CE hours that have been approved by an official Education Review Body (ERB). The USGBC maintains a course catalog that updates whenever a program earns CE approval. AEC Daily52 approved coursesHosts courses typically developed by manufacturers. To be clear, there are free offerings in the course catalog that I've missed, as many manufacturers are starting to get on board with the new system and getting their lunch and learns up to date...

House T By Hiroyuki Shinozaki Architects Tokyo-based studio, Hiroyuki Shinozaki Architects, have designed House T, with unique interior design that allows each floor level to seem like a floating stage. Located in Tokyo, Japan … Hiroyuki Shinozaki Architects Basé à Tokyo, le studio, Hiroyuki Shinozaki Architects ont conçu la House T, avec un design intérieur unique qui permet à chaque étage de ressembler à une scène flottante. PlanetReuse Foresight Design Initiative SpontaneousInterventions | Design Actions for the Common Good MILL VALLEY CABINS ‘Feldman Architects’ added some accessory structures to an existing building, creating the ‘Mill Valley Cabins’. They created an artist studio and a yoga space which also serves as a private guest cabin. The program was divided into two small cabins which could be placed lightly between existing trees with minimal re-grading. Additionally, the orientation of the two cabins captures different views. The roof of the lower building was planted with a garden since the upper building would look down on it and the client and design team wanted the building to blend into the hillside. The green roof also provides additional landscape for the client’s love of gardening. All images © Joe Fletcher

Beautiful Chinese Pedestrian Bridge Images via CA-GROUPRecently completed in the Qingpu district of Shanghai, this elegant pedestrian bridge is the work of CA-GROUP, an international architecture and urban planning collaborative triangulated between China, Spain, and Japan. The sharp eyes of the Design Milk people caught this one, and were rightly intrigued. Drawing on China's long bridge-building history, the designers recognized that "the bridge should provide for a dedicated space on the river, a room over the water, more than merely acting as an engineering device that solves a communication problem." Whether its the view of the water, the feeling of passing to the other shore, or just the absence of police cars, pedestrian bridges so often become thriving veins of social activity. More BridgesThe Ten Most Beautiful Bridges in the WorldShigeru Ban Builds Bridge Out of PaperSolar Power, Sea-Water Heating and a New 'Bridge' for Copenhagen

CR Land Guanganmen Green Technology Showroom / Vector Architects Architect: Vector Architects Location: Beijing, China Project Year: 2008 Client: CR Land Design Partner in Charge: Gong Dong Managing Partner in Charge: Hongyu Zhang Project Architect: Shuo Li Site Area: 500 sqm Photographs: Vector Architecture Design Concept: The project is a “temporary” Green Technology Showroom of 3-year use for one of CR Land’s (华润置地) residential projects in Beijing. Sustainable Features: Site Selection We are involved into the project at early stage when client tried to specify the building footprint within the residential compound. 1. the minimal impact of the designed landscape construction 2. the minimal impact of planned pedestrian circulation 3. Structure System Selection We used the steel structure as the main structural system of the building, therefore, 1. Building Envelope: Vertical Grass Wall Paneling system and Green Roof We apply the vertical grass panel system and green roof onto the building envelop, 1.

GreenSource | McGraw-Hill Construction's on-line directory of information on sustainable design, practice and products

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