Have a Plan, Hire an Architect!
What is an Architect? Who is an Architect? An Architect provides services and direction. They are someone who connects the general public to the fascinating way a person engages and is in communion with the built environment. Below are a few (eight) things Architects can do with you!
1. Architectural Services: Images, Drawings & Products – Images for Funding or Drawings and Specs to coordinate with a contractor. Organizational diagrams for a new space or arrangement to include all possible customer thoughts and situations allow a project to run smoothly so that a customers needs will be carried out effectively through construction to completion. Benefits include pride of ownership, financial security, providing for the family, and inclusion in a neighborhood.
2. Organizational services: Gives end user more control of daily schedule and tasks. Allows a peace and serenity of knowing what to expect. Impress yourself and others and enjoy the time with your newly organized space.
3. Sell/ Promote Sustainable & Local Materials: Healthy purchases and supporting local business encourages others to restore hope in what a surrounding community has to offer. Building relationships while restoring spaces we have will only strengthen and enhance the future of our place.
4. Assisting in the acquisition of Construction Materials & Finishes: Ease of purchase with the trust of a professional colleague and their knowledge gives you the most for your time and money. An architect also gives assistance in the understanding of the long-term versus the short-term investment.
5. Host workshops & Demonstration Days: Cheap, quick, easy and non-committed way to see the whole picture of what new technology has to offer the architectural world in the planning of a project with computer programs such as photoshop and sketchup.
6. Workshops for ‘Plan with an Architect’: Non commitment and opportunity to learn and evolve personal project ideas with time an Architect provides to you on your planned schedule.
7. Host events for local Artists: Perform, Connect & Critique - A creative outlet with a community of local interests.
8. A Forum for Trading Services: A creative outlet with a community of local interests.
Who Hires an Architect?
A family who wants healthy materials for their children, low maintenance surroundings and low-cost systems and products.
Young couples and singles who want healthy homes and who want to spread the Sustainable Word !
Business owners looking for better productivity in happier, healthier environments. Those looking for a better use of space, maximizing the current situation to its best potential.
Older communities who need low maintenance living arrangements.
Low to No Income families who depend on low utility bills and passive buildings to serve their needs with the a very low budget.
Contractors with compliance work.
Mission Statement of the Future
Learn more and share knowledge. As pioneers, creators, designers, and architects, promoting health and envisioning a beautiful world that we care for is central to the mission. We are helping people to make decisions toward their health and the perseverance of our resources with the studied knowledge of valued old practices infused with the most astute means. We are helping people Plan and Build!
Through out an architect’s profession, we are presented with privy information of peoples unique lifestyles and are constantly learning while planning their homes and businesses specific to the persons and site. A positive change in the Architecture and Building Industries is a shift toward using renewable products and passive systems that work with nature’s cycles and seasons instead of depending on a singular entity; it is more dispersed to a local level.
An environment that is open enough for a community to visit an architect’s office to discuss a project or options for one proves that the profession is working in the right direction. This communal connection expands the mind with an opportunity of chance to include smaller ideas of design happening around us.
The Online Green Design team offers consumers a one-stop shop for environmentally friendly design solutions in architecture, provided by Kayafas, Breisch and Crowley Architects of Wheeling; landscape, by Hays Landscape Architecture Studio Ltd. in St. Clairsville; interiors by Kellie M. Clark of SMG Architects, Interiors Division, in Wheeling; alternative energy solutions by Ohio Valley-based GreenEnergyWise; and mechanical systems by Integrated Green Solutions in Cleveland.
Three of the team members -KBC, Hays and Integrated Green Solutions – recently worked together to design the new Olney School activities center in Barnesville, a project that Olney officials requested go beyond the requirements of LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, the internationally recognized green building certification system.
The three businesses decided to form a cooperative, adding two more “spokes” to the wheel – interior design and alternative energy. They are hoping to roll with Online Green Design locally as well as nationally, through the Web site, www.onlineGreenDesign.com.
Architect Tim Crowley said some people looking to build a home might not want to incorporate all aspects of green design, but the team offers a “green, greener, greenest” continuum to meet their needs. He encourages people, though, to consider that “going green” can mean a lot more than catching stormwater in a rain barrel or using compact fluorescent light bulbs.
“If you want to go green, you have to look at it from a holistic point of view, and we have a team that can address that for you,” Crowley said.
The Green Row
People might not think of modular homes as environmentally friendly, but they are at the heart of this new “green team.” The team developed The Green Row concept, which is urban infill housing using modular construction. Crowley was inspired to devise The Green Row while staring out his office window on Chapline Street at the row houses across the street owned by his partner Gus Kayafas.
“I thought, ‘Those could so easily be modular,'” he said, noting the long, narrow spaces. Because modular homes are manufactured in a factory, then transported and lifted by crane and set into place, urban centers would not be torn up for months during construction, and homeowners or renters could move in a fraction of the time it would take to build a wooden frame home.
“There is a trend nationwide of people moving back to the cities,” Crowley said. City living can be considered green because the infrastructure already is in place, utility lines are in place, and homes and yards are smaller meaning they require less maintenance and energy.
In Wheeling, the city is in the process of demolishing dilapidated homes and at the same time there is a need for affordable housing. The Green Row could be the answer, although the homes are not necessarily low-cost housing.
“I always say it may be cheap, but at what cost?” said Clark, the interior designer. Green homes are healthier homes, not only for the environment but for the occupants, she said.
Crowley said he pitched The Green Row concept to Haven Homes, a Maryland-based modular manufacturer with a factory in State College, Pa., and the company has partnered with Online Green Design to offer The Green Row in cities across the country. Haven and the team have come up with a variety of facades for the homes in order to fit in with the neighborhood, and there are several interior layout options, including one-, two- and three-bedroom plans. Commercial structures and apartment buildings also will be available.
Modular homes are “green” in many ways, Crowley said, starting with the fact they are constructed indoors by skilled craftsmen who, like the Eskimos who use every part of the whale they slaughter, use every scrap of material.
“They are saving every scrap of 2-by-4 to use as blocking on the next home,” Crowley said. The homes are inherently durable and tight, he added, and once completed can be put up on site in a day, so there is no worry about weather damage or time wasted on waiting for the weather to change.
Haven Homes is known for its architectural detail and quality control, according to an article in Builder magazine, “10 Companies to Watch in 2010.” Its homes are usually at the pricier end of the modular market. Crowley said The Green Row homes are mid- to high-range, but that “they definitely compare with custom-built stick homes.”
Interior designer Kellie M. Clark has experience working on green interiors, but she has never designed a 100-percent green home and is looking forward to working with the Online Green Design team.
The first component of a green interior is indoor air quality, Clark said. She recommends paint and floor coverings that are free of volatile organic compounds, or VOCs; as well as quality constructed furniture and sealants that contain no formaldehyde. She has used jute, a highly sustainable natural product, for flooring. Gus Kayafas also mentioned hardwood floors available from regional managed forests are sustainable, durable and support the local economy.
Clark added she uses as many locally made or secondhand items as possible in her interior design work, thereby cutting down on manufacturing and transportation costs.
Natural lighting is optimized in a green home, she said, and fireplaces are located in the middle of the home to make best use of the heat they provide. LEDs and compact fluorescent bulbs are used to save energy, along with energy-efficient appliances and low-flow plumbing fixtures. These also are part of the mechanical design elements provided by Integrated Green Solutions.
“The key component to energy efficiency is geothermal energy,” said Gus Kayafas. This involves energy recovery ventilation, which uses the heated air that is expelled from the home to help heat the air that is being brought in. Green homes also are highly insulated, he said.
Another component is the use of wind and solar energy. All of these elements can be incorporated into custom-built homes, whether frame or modular. Occupancy sensors that turn the lights on and off based on movement in the room, and programmable thermostats are additional green systems that are available if desired.
The nice thing about a Green Row home is it usually has minimal yard space so maintenance costs also are low, said Gabe Hays of Hays Landscape Architecture Studio. A 15-foot by 9-inch facade offers little in the way of front yard, but can be nicely accented with a potted rhododendron or evergreen.
While the nature of his business is green, Hays said landscape architecture can be made greener by using drought-tolerant plants that require little or no watering; installing rain barrels or more attractive water features to provide water for the plants that do need it; recycling as much brick, rock and other materials as possible by incorporating them into the landscape; and even integrating gardens that provide food – an edible landscape, Hays said.
Learn about The Community Service
Our grandfather, Arthur Morgan, started the non-profit Community Service Inc. in the last phase of his life to promote his ideas about the importance of small communities to society. Our mother kept it going for years and now my sister Faith and her husband are using it, with the new name, for sharing ideas about how to deal with peak oil and climate change.
An economic approach of building community.