Other companies are trying to save on gas by buying hybrids. Rana Creek Habitat Restoration, a Carmel Valley, Calif., landscape-architecture and ecological-design firm with 32 employees, traded in four of its 10-auto fleet for various hybrids. They altogether cost about $130,000, but each uses only about $25 a week in fuel, compared with $100 for the traditional autos — an annual savings of about $3,900 per hybrid.
SOURCE: Read more @ the Wall Street Journal – Tackling the Energy Monster
The green build wave is rising, and right now general contractors have the opportunity to ride its crest. It is fast becoming expected that professionals in the building trades are ready, willing and able to work green — and that means understanding the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED standards (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design).
Contractor’s LEEDing Role
In the chain of events that leads up to LEED certification, general contractors have a special “watchdog” role. It is the general contractor’s responsibility to keep accurate records on all materials used that are required to meet LEED standards. Consequently, it is imperative that not only the general contractor but also sub-contractors understand LEED certification, its requirements and its growing importance in winning bids.
Once the SSI guidelines are published in spring 2009, general contractors, landscape architects, developers, builders, and maintenance crews who are prepared to take advantage of them stand to see interest in obtaining their services rising.
Read more @ the SOURCE: Texas Contractor – Going Green From The Ground Up – 6/16/2008 Author of the SOURCE article is Jo Ann Jarreau call (713) 682–5299
Glenmore Park, opened in 1990, was designed without consideration for public transport, an urban planning expert says. The bus company serving the area says it is difficult to manoeuvre around, and residents say buses are infrequent and unreliable.
Bill Randolph, from the City Futures Research Centre, at the University of NSW, said Glenmore Park was a classic example of a 1990s design of cul-de-sacs and small, bending roads. “The key thing is, it was never designed forpublic transport … It was assumed everybody would just be driving cars.”
read more @ the SOURCE: smh.com.au – They build a suburb, then find the buses don’t fit – National
The Times has published an insightful article about the ‘eco-towns’ proposed by the UK Government
Ten new clean, green ‘eco-towns’ will be built by 2020. And pigs might fly, say critics. They argue that the government is bulldozing through a programme that will create the slum estates of the future
This is how it will be. Across the fair face of Albion, to the ringing of bells and the soft murmur of doves, appears a leafy flush of eco-towns. They are sun-dappled utopias, urban dreamworlds in which no human need is unfulfilled. Wildlife romps through bird-loud glades. People work at home or in business parks to which they can stroll or cycle. Public transport is swift, efficient and free, so cars are not needed. Community sports hubs, leisure and cultural facilities are so abundant that nobody wants to leave the town anyway. Children walk safely to schools in which the most popular subject is environmentalism. There are superstores for convenience, and farmers’ markets for friends of the planet. Allotments, too, for those who want to grow their own. Energy is renewable, insulation total and the carbon footprint zero.
Read more @ the SOURCE: Times Online – Ecotowns: for and against – .
Two Arup buildings opened on June 13 forming central features for the Expo 2008 in Zaragoza, Spain. The Bridge Pavilion, designed by Zaha Hadid Architects and Arup is a pedestrian bridge and also serves as the main entrance to the Expo site. The bridge also provides one of the event’s main exhibition spaces.
Before reaching the Bridge Pavilion visitors to Zaragoza Expo 2008 will encounter another Arup collaboration, the Digital Water Pavilion. Created by the architect Carlo Ratti, the pavilion provides breathtaking views over the Expo site.
For more information refer to ARUP News