Monthly Archives: April 2011

2011 COTE Top Ten Green Projects Revealed

Posted on April 29th, 2011 by

A few weeks ago we shared major news from the world of architecture announcing the winner of the Pritzker prize, and we are back again with exciting news. The American Institute of Architecture (AIA) along with their Committee On The Environment (COTE) recently revealed the 2011 Top Green Projects. According to the official press release the projects chosen are the “top ten examples of sustainable architecture and green design solutions that protect and enhance the environment.” They will all be honored at the AIA 2011 National Convention and Design Exposition in New Orleans.

The projects which range from apartment buildings to schools, convention centers, and office buildings we judged on their positive contribution to their communities and their reduced impact on the environment. “They improve comfort for building occupants and reduce environmental impacts through strategies such as reuse of existing structures, connection to transit systems, low-impact and regenerative site development, energy and water conservation, use of sustainable or renewable construction materials, and design that improves indoor air quality. They are all the result of a thoroughly integrated approach to architecture, natural systems and technology.”

OS House

Livestrong Foundation

Livestrong Foundation

Kiowa County K-12 Schools

Kiowa County K-12 Schools


Vancouver Convention Center

To view in depth details and pictures of the 2011 COTE Top Ten Green Projects visit the AIA website.

Quotes and images from the AIA official press release.

The 5 Pillars of Outdoor Room Design

Posted on April 26th, 2011 by

As the temperature grows warmer day by day have you found yourself considering the addition of an outdoor room? Outdoor rooms allow you to enjoy the comforts of your living or dining room right in the midst of nature. In conjunction with providing you with optimal comfort, outdoor rooms should also showcase the surrounding outdoor environment. Keep these 5 pillars of outdoor room design in mind as you contemplate your addition.

  1. Invent within the rules- The design language of every great outdoor living space is documented in a common set of rules that have shaped the designs of generations of projects. These rules are tools to guide the conceptual layout of the outdoor living space, govern the way details go together and determine the appropriate materials to use.
  2. Respect, complement nature- Outdoor living spaces complement their setting by respecting the character of the place in which it is built. By designing with the natural features of the land and by fitting into the distinctive patterns of the seasons, the outdoor living space can blend into the setting and be sympathetic to the environment.
  3. Build for the ages- A properly designed outdoor living space will stand the test of time and stand apart from what is seen, adding value to a house for resale.
  4. Detail for authenticity- The success of a properly designed outdoor living space depends on incorporating details that are well-executed and true to form. Lack of detail causes unevenness and void of focus throughout the entire design. Details must be executed consistently throughout the project, from concept to the final layout.
  5. Incorporate convenience- Most of the essential comforting features of a well-designed outdoor living space can be woven into the fabric of even the smallest project without being intrusive or overwhelming. As can new functions to provide a unique design version for the outdoor space.

Pillars from Residential design + build

If  you are in the metro Kansas City area and would like to discuss adding an outdoor room to your home give us a call at 913-722-1443.

The 2011 Spring Homes Tour is Underway!

Posted on April 22nd, 2011 by

There is no better way to get ideas about your new home or remodel than by actually witnessing the latest options available in home design. For 49 years the tradition of the Spring Homes Tour has been helping buyers find their dream home, and inspiring current homeowners looking to renovate. The 2011 Spring Homes Tour presented by the Home Builders Association of Great Kansas City kicked off April 16th and will run until May 1st.

This year’s home tour includes 246 homes located throughout the Kansas City metropolitan area, so whether you are looking for ideas for a single family home, or a multifamily dwelling there is something for everyone. The homes will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. with free admission, with tour guides available at the Home Builders Association located at I-435 and Holmes.

For additional information on the 2011 Spring Homes Tour visit the Home Builders Association of Greater Kansas City website.