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Family Builds Out Old Home By Lifting It Up, Up, Up – by David Hayes

Posted by on Feb 1, 2017 in Eco-Notes, The Media Cafe | Comments Off on Family Builds Out Old Home By Lifting It Up, Up, Up – by David Hayes

Family Builds Out Old Home By Lifting It Up, Up, Up – by David Hayes

Betsy Grant and her husband Steve have wanted to own a home in the Olde Town section of Issaquah since they lived in an apartment on Front Street in 2001. Their dream came to fruition in 2014 when a property went up for sale on First Avenue Northeast — a 1,070-square-foot rambler built in the 1950s.  “We love the neighborhood. We wanted to be where we could walk places and ride our bikes all the time,” Betsy Grant said. “We found the location. Now we’re creating the house to fit our family.” With two sets of twins, the Grants needed more...

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4 Tips for Preparing Your Home for a Loved One with Parkinson’s Disease

Posted by on Nov 16, 2016 in Eco-Notes | Comments Off on 4 Tips for Preparing Your Home for a Loved One with Parkinson’s Disease

4 Tips for Preparing Your Home for a Loved One with Parkinson’s Disease

By Guest Blogger Jim Vogel There are an estimated 60,000 Americans diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease (PD) each year, and the illness seems to be especially prominent in the senior population. As a result, many families are opening their homes to elder loved ones with Parkinson’s rather than opting for them to live on their own (which can create dangerous circumstances as the disease progresses) or in a senior care facility. The disease can make some everyday, seemingly-harmless tasks become hazardous. Chopping vegetables in the kitchen, for...

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At Peace in Your Home, Part 3: An Exercise in Spatial Mindfulness

Posted by on Nov 11, 2016 in Eco-Notes | Comments Off on At Peace in Your Home, Part 3: An Exercise in Spatial Mindfulness

At Peace in Your Home, Part 3: An Exercise in Spatial Mindfulness

In this concluding post on the topic of home, we’d like to offer a few questions to guide you as you explore how you can create restorative spaces at home.

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At Peace in Your Home, Part 2: Spatial Mindfulness

Posted by on Nov 2, 2016 in Eco-Notes | 0 comments

At Peace in Your Home, Part 2: Spatial Mindfulness

The qualities and features required to create a restorative home depend on the needs of the inhabitants. In his book A Home for the Soul, architect Anthony Lawlor describes that there is often “a gap between who we are and where we live”[1].

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At Peace in Your Home, Part 1: Nesting Instincts

Posted by on Oct 21, 2016 in Eco-Notes | 0 comments

At Peace in Your Home, Part 1: Nesting Instincts

I had a roommate in college who would spend days at the library studying for finals. She would stop home briefly to shower and change as needed, but for the larger part of a week would dwell elsewhere. Once all of her finals were complete, she would return home in full force, immersing herself in the space she had forsaken for the demands of school. She would thoroughly clean our apartment with celebratory relief, cook piles of food to share with friends, and generally reconnect with her home

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Slowing Down and Scaling Up: Thoughts on Regenerative Design

Posted by on Nov 6, 2015 in Eco-Notes | 0 comments

Slowing Down and Scaling Up: Thoughts on Regenerative Design

Designing a regenerative future for any ecosystem requires first understanding the system – discovering its patterns and relationships in order to engage with them. As you might imagine, uncovering invisible patterns in an ecosystem is not a strictly linear process. It requires careful consideration, asking us to slow down.

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What Does it Mean to “Build Local”?

Posted by on May 11, 2015 in Eco-Notes, The Media Cafe | 0 comments

What Does it Mean to “Build Local”?

Most of us are familiar with the economic and environmental benefits of “buy local”: contributing to our local economy, minimizing the energy spent transporting our purchases, and supporting organizations capable of responding to the unique needs or desires of our community. If we expand this approach to building a home or small business space, it is clear that the same strategies apply – from obtaining materials from local and regional sources, to working with nearby designers who understand the local climate and lifestyle. The “build local” approach is also essential to accomplishing a more ephemeral feat: what architects often term a “sense of place.”

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Leading Force Energy and Design Center: A Space for Powerful Ideas

Posted by on Dec 1, 2014 in Eco-Notes, The Media Cafe | 2 comments

Leading Force Energy and Design Center: A Space for Powerful Ideas

There is a revolution underway in the building industry based on a simple, yet powerful idea: collaboration produces better results. This seems like an obvious truth. So why is it so revolutionary in the building professions? Isn’t this the way buildings are built?

As it turns out, it isn’t–at least, not historically. The traditional approach to building design and construction is what the American Institute of Architects (AIA) calls the “building triad” — comprised of the owner, architect, and contractor. This triad forms the top of the project hierarchy and additional subcontractors and specialists are brought into a project as needed. But this way of working is outdated. It fails to harness and apply specialized knowledge. It leads to inefficiencies, miscommunications, and missed opportunities.

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Upgrading a Mid-Century Classic

Posted by on Aug 25, 2014 in Eco-Notes, The Media Cafe | 1 comment

Upgrading a Mid-Century Classic

With the recent revival of the housing market, it is a great time to think about upgrading existing homes to improve their livability and longevity. We recently had the opportunity to recommend an upgrade strategy for a mid-century home in Bellevue, WA. Mid-century homes offer many desirable features and renovation possibilities. While surface updates are the most immediately appealing, energy efficiency upgrades are essential to the long-term sustainability of any home. We recommend getting started with an energy audit to identify the most...

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Flowers, Buildings, and a Sustainable Future

Posted by on Jun 16, 2014 in Eco-Notes, The Media Cafe | Comments Off on Flowers, Buildings, and a Sustainable Future

Flowers, Buildings, and a Sustainable Future

The Living Future Institute recently released their updated guidelines for the Living Building Challenge – a program that outlines rigorous building standards geared towards creating a more sustainable built environment. The Challenge is at once a philosophy, advocacy tool, and certification program. Living Buildings are intended to lead by example and demonstrate the realities of the environmental, social, and economic goals outlined in the document.

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