National Green Building Conference Honors Green Builders and Architects

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) recently honored 17 building industry professionals from across the country for their excellence and innovation in green home building at the 10th Annual NAHB National Green Building Conference in New Orleans.

The winners are all pioneers in bringing sustainable building practices into the mainstream. As the demand by consumers for green homes continues to grow designers and architects continue to incorporate green elements into their house plans.

Green Builders Inc. approached Danze & Davis Architects, Inc. to design homes that were 'green' but could still be marketed in the production builder world and be affordable to the masses The NAHB's National Green Building Award for "Single Family Affordable Home of the Year" went to Green Builders, Inc. in Austin, Texas for its Sycamore model. Architect Donovan Davis of Danze & Davis Architects, Inc. and The House Designers, designed the award-winning house plan.

"Green Builders Inc. approached Danze & Davis Architects, Inc. to design homes that were 'green' but could still be marketed in the production builder world and be affordable to the masses," said Davis, who quickly adapted some of their stock plans so they could begin building. "Working with the builder and a green architect specialist we were able to choose 'green' items that would provide function and still be economically feasible."

The 2,834 square foot house quickly sold for $285,000 and inspired the 13 production models for Georgetown Village, a community that will have 2,000 homes by 2015. You can view and purchase the original stock house plan, THD-1252 at The House Designers website. Davis is currently designing new plans for Green Builders, which will run from 1,650 to 2,800 square feet and cost between $190,000 and $275,000.

"We wanted the model to fit into the neighborhood without screaming green," said Davis, who designed the home with an architectural style that would fit into any traditional neighborhood.

According to Davis, some of the key changes to making their existing house plan "green" was using foam insulation in the whole house, placing the HVAC unit within the insulated envelope and purchasing the best energy-efficient windows. They also used tankless water heaters, overhangs, shed roofs, bamboo flooring, low VOC paints and carpets, compact fluorescent lights, ENERGY STAR® appliances and recycled countertops and tiles.

"Great solutions are possible when the architect, builder and homeowner work together to provide the most green home feasible within the budget constraints," Davis said.

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