ABC Green Home 2.0 breaks ground in California
Following the success of the Gold Nugget award-winning original ABC (Affordable, Buildable, Certifiable) Green Home at the Great Park in Irvine, California, Green Home Builder magazine, Southern California Edison (SCE) and Habitat for Humanity are proud to announce the groundbreaking of the ABC Green Home 2.0 in Walnut, California today. See the virtual tour here.
Upon completion, home will be open to the building industry and the general public for six months in order to showcase the home's technologies and green products. It will eventually be made available to a disabled U.S. Veteran family through Habitat for Humanity on a lot donated by the City of Walnut.
Noted architect Manny Gonzalez and his team from the Los Angeles office of the KTGY Group Architecture + Planning designed the home; a 2,400-square foot plan that will accommodate multi-generational living and offers "smart home technology," which works together to automate a number of the home's basic systems, including the electrical, lighting, security and communication systems.
The ABC Green Home 2.0 is smart and sustainable. It demonstrates that a solar-powered, sustainable home can be built using available materials, technology and appliances at a cost that is competitive with conventional housing. Implementing numerous green building practices, the ABC Green Home 2.0 will continue its high-performance themes brought to life by the original project and maintain the principles of being affordable, buildable and third-party certifiable.
Since California is seeking to make net-zero energy use mandatory by 2020, the home and its sustainability template will show how to achieve net-zero now. SCE and other groups plan to use the home as a class room to educate builders, architects, designers and others about energy efficient construction techniques.
This high-performance home is being developed by Green Home Builder magazine, supported by SCE and built by Habitat for Humanity. Noted design team members include The KTGY Group Architecture + Planning, Urban Arena, LJP, Albus Keefe, Hall and Foreman, Gouvis Engineering Consulting Company, Green Point Rated, Venture One, and Ripple Creative Group. Much of the designers were part of the original team from the ABC Green Home 1.0, which has been on display at the Great Park for two years and was part of the U.S. Department of Energy's Solar Decathlon in 2013.
PetersenDean Roofing & Solar is supplying 8.5KW of solar for the home, helping it achieve Zero-Net Energy (ZNE), meaning it will produce as much energy as it uses during the year through a combination of energy efficient practices and products and on-site, grid-tied renewable energy production.
Organizers hope that the ABC Green Home will demonstrate how to utilize design, planning, engineering and science to create the ideal green home at a reasonable cost.
"There's a misconception in the housing business that green homebuilding is daunting," said Nick Slevin, publisher of Green Home Builder magazine and a project organizer. "We are building 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. There are few if any, affordable, entry-level, certified green homes being built by production homebuilders for sale in America so the home is expected to serve as a laboratory for design and construction of future sustainable housing."
Demonstrating the best green practices in the industry, the home will be certified by six agencies, including LEED Platinum for Homes certified, Cal Green, Build it Green, California Advanced Homes, ENERGY STAR and NAHB Green. These well-known programs represent a high standard in national third-party certification for sustainability in new home construction. "We chose the top six most commonly used rating systems that a builder would typically use themselves to independently certify that their homes are being properly constructed, sustainable and built green. Any builder can copy this model on any lot in America," said Slevin.
With contemporary styling and classic curb appeal, ABC 2.0 showcases energy-efficient products and appliances throughout the home. Everything within the home is eco-friendly, including the low-VOC paints, the windows, doors, faucets, bathroom fixtures, appliances, solar roof and landscaping.
Other components include:
- Solar panels have been placed on the rear roof to improve the home's appearance.
- Outdoor living area to help reduce indoor electricity costs.
- Studs -- the upright pieces of lumber in walls -- have been built 2-feet apart instead of the traditional 16 inches and are made from 2-by-6-inch boards instead of the traditional 2-by-4's. This reduces lumber use and creates bigger spaces in walls for insulation.
- Carpets are made from recycled materials.
- Landscaping reduces water consumption, uses paving stones that recycle water for irrigation.
- Non-toxic, zero emissions paint and wallpaper are used to improve the indoor air quality.
The ABC Green Home 2.0 is setting new sustainable standards for Habitat for Humanity as well.
"We view it as a great learning opportunity for us while also allowing us to serve a local veteran and his or her family. While our homes exceed Title 24 standards, this is a whole new level of sustainability and we're very excited about it," said Jody Gmeiner, President/CEO of the Pomona Valley Habitat for Humanity.
The 2.0 home is pushing sustainable boundaries in many areas, including the solar component by PetersenDean, which includes 8.5 KW of solar, compared to the average 3.5KW on other green homes. "We've asked this house to do more than most ZNE homes and have definitely taken it to the next level. From the electric vehicle charging station to the solar power," said Slevin.
Energy conservation is just one of the reasons the project has been so popular with industry leaders and groups like SCE, Habitat for Humanity and KTGY.
"Southern California Edison is proud to support the ABC Green Home. It's our hope that this visionary project inspires homeowners, builders and renters to think about all the possibilities that are open to them. Every energy-efficient feature, no matter how small, makes a positive impact on their own electric bills and the environment that we all share," said John Morton, project construction manager with SCE.
The ABC Green Home 2.0 is also a showcase for cutting edge technology. "Any home that is programmable by the home owner is exciting. There are a lot of things you can do with this home with the push of a button from turning on and off the lights, sprinklers, appliances and unlocking the doors, to monitoring your security system, or even closing the blinds, or turning on the ceiling fans," said Slevin. "Being able to operate your home from your smart phone device is a feature and a benefit. This smart home technology is standard in an ABC Green Home and we believe that technology simplifies life, and if you are a wounded vet you want things to be simple."
The home even includes Universal Design elements, making it suitable for ownership for a wide cross section of the American home-buying public. It is handicapped-compatible with wider doors and halls, lower work spaces, and can be adapted for wheelchairs in showers and under sinks.
Upon completion, the ABC Green Home 2.0 will be open to the building industry and the general public for six months in order to showcase the home's technologies and green products. Networking events and demonstrations will be hosted at the home by SCE, BIA, AIA, and ULI along with several product partners and sponsors. After which, the home will eventually be made available to a disabled U.S. Veteran family in Walnut, California through Habitat for Humanity.
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