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Could This Be What the World’s First Truly Green City Looks Like?

A new project called OAS1S promises in the near future we’ll all be living in lush, garden communities.

Sure you’ve heard of green architecture, but what about a building made entirely from plants? A new proposal by Dutch experiential designer and architectural manager Raimond de Hullu (MSc), called OAS1S, promises that in the near future we might all be living in our very own garden homes. The project, which aspires to be the first 100 percent truly green building, offers up a vision of structures that are long and thin like trees with rooms stacked for maximum space (Think if government housing projects were modeled on Ferngully). The buildings would each be wrapped in foliage, and live “amongst a woodland within a city”—essentially a tree-based community within a larger metropolis.

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Can Net Zero Re-Energize the Homebuilding Industry?

A new development just west of Seattle is looking to upend the way homes are designed, built, sold, and lived in.


In Issaquah, Washington, just west of Seattle, there’s a 10-home development looking to upend the way homes are designed, built, sold, and lived in. Designed to radically reduce its environmental impacts, zHome is aiming to prove that homes that use zero net energy and 60 percent less water, emit net zero carbon emissions, have clean indoor air, and use only low-toxicity materials are not only possible but are scalable to mainstream home production. And zHome recognizes that the only truly sustainable housing option is multi-family, so in this development you’ll find no single-family residences.

For an industry that still thinks of “green” as futuristic, expensive, and not necessarily important to the consumer, what zHome is promising is highly unusual—and way overdue. So too is its impressively serious education program, designed to transform builders and buyers alike into eco-advocates. There’s even a field trip program for kids. Modern homes are about as innovative as the Model T, says Project Manager Brad Liljequist, "but to me the home is the lowest hanging fruit of potential environmental innovation ... zHome is having already having a catalyzing effect regionally, and we’re not even complete.”

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