This past Wednesday the Zero Energy group met once again, but this time to celebrate the conclusion of their work. This group has been meeting longer than any other – they began in September – and I’d like to suggest that they feel more passionately about their work than any other group. This group represents, in many ways, the heart and soul of the building construction work. It was up to them to figure out ways to heat and cool the building by using as little energy as possible, and because of their efforts, it now looks like we’ll be able to heat and cool this 11,000 sq ft building as if it were only 1,000 sq ft. We are eternally grateful to them and their dedication to this incredibly complex task. They are, from left, Tom Brennan, Kirsten Lyons, Ken Byczynski, Laura Long and Laurie Catey.
The materials group has also been on a journey, first examining ways to reuse materials that already exist in the building, then finding reused materials from other sources, then looking at natural materials, and finally purchasing new materials (such as windows). In the natural materials department, no one is better than Deanne Bednar of the Strawbale Studio, and she (and her 2 interns Amity and Sam) paid a visit on Friday.
We asked Deanne to help us consider ways to incorporate natural materials into things like our backyard fence (perhaps cob?) or interior walls (earthen plaster?). She gave the group a lot to think about – we’re grateful for her time.