Minimize ecological footprint
  • Passive survivability (cistern, organic garden, off-grid capability/flexibility).
  • Using LEED Platinum, Living Building Challenge as guides, goal = innovation beyond LEED.


  • Net zero-energy/zero-carbon emission home including the family’s transportation.
  • Fossil-fuel free/oil independent house, grounds and transportation.
  • Transportation (present/future) integrated into design—net-zero with enough solar for 5 electric vehicles. Conversion to electric fleet is in process.
  • Super-efficient enclosure, including windows.
  • Natural light primary/sole source of light during daylight hours. Connected load highly efficient, <1w per sf with all lights on at full power. All LED or CFL lighting fixtures, zero incandescent fixtures.
  • Ground source heat exchange as sole source of domestic (radiant hydronic) heat and pool heat.
  • Passive ventilation—no air-conditioning needed, but radiant cooling included as future-proofing and can be enabled for demonstration purposes.
  • Dedicated fresh outdoor air ventilation, 24/7.
  • On demand hot water loop.
  • Wireless control system to manage home energy, provide performance dashboard.


  • Replace conventional products/materials with environmentally preferable alternatives.
  • Durability—100 years or more. Earthquake safety comparable to schools and hospitals.
  • 100% FSC or reclaimed wood for entire project - interior (achieved 100%) and exterior (achieved 97% due to a minimal amount of engineered lumber not available FSC).
  • 100% reclaimed or salvaged stone for interiors and landscape. No newly quarried stone except kitchen counters where matching layout in reclaimed impossible.
  • Recycled metals for door and window hardware, railings, roof.
  • Zero painted surfaces.
  • No PVC onsite (except for certain small parts where alternatives not available).
  • Existing home deconstructed, materials reused and recycled.


  • Super-efficient plumbing fixtures.
  • All gray and black water treated and reused for irrigation; potable/city water for domestic use only.
  • High efficiency irrigation system using harvested rainwater (50,000 gallon cistern) and treated black/grey wastewater.


  • Enhance and restore native plant communities onsite to support native wildlife.
  • Long-term biological monitoring by team of field biologists.
  • Highly efficient pool. Uses ozonation technology, reducing need for chlorine by 50 to 75%.
  • Natural bogs for wildlife (bio-filtered, no chemicals).
The Project