Ever since the premier of USGBC’s two-day REGREEN workshop in Phoenix, AZ at Greenbuild last November, Annette, Rob, and I have been gearing up for a slew of green remodeling workshops across the country — the REGREEN Roadshow. The REGREEN workshops are a lot of fun to teach (and take) for two reasons: one, the blend of builder/remodeler with interior design perspectives is completely refreshing; and two, the substantial and substantive group work woven into the workshop makes for an energetic and invigorating approach.
Now you might be saying to yourself: What? Interior designers and hard-core building science-builder types making sweet music together? You would be surprised at how well these perspectives can inform each other. Here is just one example:
Your clients TELL you they want new replacement windows. But what they actually want is to keep the way their windows currently look, not spend too much, and get real performance improvements (in terms of energy efficiency, thermal comfort, and daylighting — without overheating during the summer). Whew. So you sit down with an interior designer, and all of the sudden you need to compare about a dozen options — sash replacements, window films, cellular shades, awnings, shutters — all with real (but different) advantages. What started as a rather simple choice ends up to be quite a puzzle, based on a weaving of sometimes competing aspects: energy efficiency, lighting, views, privacy, cost, comfort, even noise. It’s just as much about interior design as it is hard-core remodeling.
Green remodeling is a really cool topic and REGREEN is a great approach to it. It’s definitely worth checking out the REGREEN Roadshow schedule. Although only Atlanta is up at this point, look for stops in places like Austin, Boston, Denver, New Orleans, San Francisco, and DC coming soon.
GBA Representative Remodeling Projects: (The first two are featured case studies in the REGREEN workshop)