I am 100 percent enamored with this green home, and not just because it comes out of the city of Irvine, my high school alma mater. This ABC (Affordable, Buildable, Certifiable) Green Home has received six green certificates from four agencies and is on display at Great Park, allowing homeowners and industry professionals to explore the concept of affordable eco-living––a necessity for tomorrow’s housing, and part of an effort to meet California’s mandates to build “net-zero” homes that produce as much energy as they use.
“There’s a misconception in the housing business that green homebuilding is daunting,” says Nick Slevin, publisher of Green Home Builder magazine and one of the project organizers. “We built this home out of materials you can get anywhere. It is designed to be easily built by a homebuilder on a lot anywhere in the country, using modern sustainable products and practices. In fact, students from seven local high schools helped with construction.”
The ABC Green Home's sustainable components include the following.
About the ABC Green Home
- Low-VOC paints
- A heat-exchange pump that uses electricity to heat and cool the house and water
- Low-voltage computing to draw blinds, open doors and dim lights remotely
- Studs that are two feet apart (instead of 16 inches) and made from two-by-six-inch boards (instead of the two-by-fours reducing lumber use and creating bigger spaces in walls for insulation
- Handicapped-accessibility with wider doors and halls and lower work spaces
- The ABC Green Home demonstrates how to utilize design, planning, engineering and science to create the ideal green home. Since California is seeking to make net-zero energy use mandatory by 2020, this model home shows builders how they can achieve net-zero now.
- The ABC Green Home is the first of its kind to be built by SCE or any utility company. It showcases cutting-edge technology and universal design principles that have been combined into one efficient design.
- The home was developed because there are few if any, affordable, entry-level, certified green homes being built by production homebuilders for sale in America. Nothing used in the construction is made from "Unobtanium," everything can be sourced at local builders’ supply yards.
- Incorporating advanced design and modern sustainable products and construction techniques, the home will receive six green certificates by four different agencies, such as the NAHB National Green Building Standard, California Advanced Homes and Energy Star. We know of no other homes that have achieved this high level of sustainable certification from this many agencies.
- The home is unique because it’s a high-performance house that can be built on a production level—designed to be affordable and buildable by any builder on any lot. To further demonstrate its simplicity, plans included Universal Design principles throughout the home, making it handicapped accessible.
- Students from seven Orange County high schools helped with construction as part of special educational efforts aimed at students interested in construction trades.
- After the ABC Green Home has been on display for a year at the Great Park, it will be donated to Habitat for Humanity and given to a wounded service person.
- Designed by noted Architect Manny Gonzalez of the KTGY Group, this is truly a “home of the future.” It’s a rare chance for the public to see these cutting edge sustainable principles at work while the home is on display at the Great Park through 2013.
- The ABC Green Home also provides a perfect preview of the innovative spirit and technology that will be on display at the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2013, which will take place October 3-13, 2013, at the Orange County Great Park. This will be the first time this world famous competition will be held outside of Washington, D.C., and the home will be an important part of the educational efforts.