Revolutionary California development blends outdoor living, green technology

Thu, 09/27/2012 - 13:33

Much of the inspiration for green building developments comes from nature itself, and one San Francisco, California-based project sought to combine the outdoors with modern indoor comfort, The San Francisco Chronicle reported.
According to the news outlet, several architects and contractors collaborated to create the Block 3900 development, and it combines the use of open air sections of housing with heavily insulated sections that have all of the latest technology and products.
"Our inspiration derived from the steep-site topography," said Jeff Burris, principal at Studio 12 on Third Street. "The deep, open court at the center was a direct response to the hillside, and design ideas sprung from that condition."
The housing will feature a number of modern amenities, and the individual apartments will be outfitted with technology like radiant heating systems, floor-to-ceiling windows and marble and granite countertops.
"The houses can be adapted to the user's needs," said Burris, who did his graduate work at UC Berkeley. Like the concept, the Block 3900 residences are not small, he noted. "They are tall houses, but they are pulled apart in a way that plays down the height and fosters a healthy mix of outside and inside spaces."
The use of radiant heating systems in the development is likely to increase the asking price for these condos, as the highly efficient technology is valued in the real estate industry.
Not only does radiant heating allow a homeowner to save on long-term operating costs, but it also provides families with a much more comfortable atmosphere in which to live. Floors are warm, heat radiates throughout a room and the presence of contaminants in the air is eliminated.