Friday, June 18, 2010

directions on the road to sustainability

Here's an unusual reuse of materials in architecture in Berkley, California. A fence made from street signs, awnings crafted from hatchback windows, traffic-sign siding, and a gate fashioned out of Volvo station wagon doors comprise a mixed-use urban-infill project designed, built, and developed by Leger Wanaselja Architecture.

Not only were car parts and street signs reused in a sustainable way, but windows were punched into the southern elevation, allowing for greater passive heating. The building was insulated with blown cellulose, which consists of shredded newspapers and phone books. Old-growth Douglas fir and redwood were salvaged during demolition and reused as windowsills, walls, floor patches, and custom doors. Embossed wainscoting, laying dormant under a century’s worth of plaster and bad paint jobs, was restored to offer a historical decorative touch. Terrazzo kitchen counters consisting of recycled glass in a concrete matrix were commissioned from Berkeley-based Counter Production. Low-flow dual-flush toilets and energy-saving Scandinavian kitchen appliances were installed to reduce utility demands.

Now, I'm not saying that aesthetically I would personally choose these details, but this is a great example of the bountiful possibilities in recyclable and sustainable architecture!

exterior detailing

street sign fence

hatches from mazdas create a unique railing

road sign stairwell

gate fabricated with volvo hatches

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