Silver Award for Cottage Home!

This is more recognition that Pringle Creek's Cottage Home #1 is no ordinary house. The NAHB Research Center gave it a silver Energy Value Housing Award. The award ceremony was February 13 at the 2008 International Builders’ Show in Orlando, Florida. It's a huge trade show, with attendance of over 90,000. Pringle Creek’s Don Myers attended.

Cottage Home #1 was a finalist in the “production” category in the “moderate” climate region. It is the first house built at Pringle Creek.
It was built by Salem homebuilders Larry and Blake Bilyeu and designed by Opsis Architecture of Portland. It features advanced framing techniques (including a “rain-screen” siding), a 2.5 kilowatt photo-voltaic system, passive solar design, geo-thermal heating and rainwater harvesting. All of the lumber used was from sustainable forests. The home is estimated to consume 70% less energy than a conventional home of the same size. In July 2007, the home received LEED-Platinum certification, the highest level in the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program. It was the first LEED-Platinum home in the northwest, just the sixth nationally.

We wrote about being an EVHA finalist here and provided more extensive info about the house here.


Patrick Condon's new book

Patrick Condon is a member of the Pringle Creek planning team. His most recent book, "Design Charrettes for Sustainable Communities" is on this year's Planetizen Top 10 best books in the planning field. Congratulations Patrick. Here is what Planetizen says about it:

The design charrette has gained popularity and notoriety among many communities as a powerful tool for public participation in recent years, and this book provides a step-by-step manual to harness this power. Drawing on Condon’s years of experience shaping and honing the charrette process, this book is a straightforward guide that lays out the essential steps and best practices for running a productive design charrette. His advice is equally applicable to public officials, developers and the general public – offering an insider’s view into the somewhat complicated process of pushing plans forward with both transparency and an ear to the public voice.

Patrick Condon is James Taylor Chair in Landscape and Liveable Environments at the University of British Columbia. He is a leading advocate of sustainable development with focus on the nexus of environmental design and creating a strong sense of community. He has served as friend and creative advisor to Sustainable Fairview and Pringle Creek Community.

More Patrick Condon info:
His biographical info page at UBC
Streaming audio of a two-hour talk "Green Urban Infrastructure for the 21st Century (Feb. '06)


On the roads again

Pringle Creek’s porous asphalt roads are all over the media these days--and for good reason. Take a look at this dramatic photograph showing the Pringle Creek entrance, where the beautiful porous pavement meets the flooded impervious city street.

Click here to see more such photos (thanks, santiago). Clearly, "pervious" is better. No wonder these streets are getting so much media coverage. The latest is Porous Streets Work--Even in Rainy Oregon on the worldchanging website. Columnist Erica Barnett expresses disappointment that supposedly "green" Seattle recently repaved a parking lot near Lake Washington with impervious asphalt:

What reminded me of that incident was a story in the Salem, Oregon Statesman Journal about a system of porous streets in that city's Pringle Creek Community, a housing development that has gotten national praise (even landing on Natural Home's list of the top 10 "green" housing developments in the US) for its green building and sustainable-design practices. Community members had worried that the system would not be able to stand up to Oregon's wet winters; so far, with February getting underway, residents have been hard-pressed to so much as find a puddle.

The two hyperlinks are in the original. The referenced Statesman Journal article is new, so take a look at that. And here is yet another, the website of Construction Equipment Guide. It is featuring Willamette Valley Tabbed for Porous Asphalt Streets, a very technically informative piece. Here's a sample:

The contractor washed and vacuumed the fines out of the pavement before laying the final lift of 2-in. (5 cm) pervious wearing course with a 3/8-in. (0.95 cm) top-size aggregate. The wearing course utilized a polymer modified PG 70-22 grade binder to reduce drain down and enhance long-term durability. The surface course was laid from May 25 to June 2. River Bend Sand and Gravel produced the porous asphalt mix.

“This was a unique and challenging project,” said Ron Boschler, president of North Santiam Paving. “We had done a lot of projects using open-graded design, but nothing where the water is supposed to drain through the entire street, like this porous pavement. The pavement held up well under the construction traffic. The paving part of the job was very similar to an ordinary paving job.”


Portland's new "guide for creating spaces to love"

The magnificent City of Portland. It prospers--and much of its growth is “smart.” People continue to move closer to the vibrant built-up downtown. Portland is known far and wide for good planning, green planning. Of course Portland would get a new magazine about:

. . . designing the places where we live, work, play and socialize. It’s a guide for creating spaces to love, from gardens, kitchens and living rooms, to workplaces and neighborhoods, to the city and the region as a whole. It’s about the opportunities and trade-offs in balancing sustainability, elegance and value, both when money is no object and also when it is, by necessity or by choice.

The premiere issue of Portland Spaces hit the newsstands a couple weeks ago. The feature item is a three-part Houses That Make History.

  • Part one, “three great expressions of today’s home design.”
  • Part two, a “timeline of the 164-year history of the single-family home in Portland” on their website here.
  • Part three, “building the future.” Portland Spaces found the future in Salem, at Pringle Creek Community:

. . . So the Wilsons began researching places where they could settle into their next phase of life. The Pearl District? South Waterfront? Bend? Nothing seemed to fit, until friends told them about one of the greenest new communities being built in the United States: Pringle Creek. And it happened to be only four miles from their home.

It may be surprising that the bar for American sustainability is being hoisted so high in a city the size of Salem, never mind the exact location: the former Fairview Training Center for the developmentally disabled. After the center was decommissioned in 2000, its 275-acre campus became an eco-cause célèbre for the Salem community. The result: one of the most environmentally advanced master plans ever adopted by a city. Pringle Creek will carry out 32 acres of that vision.

. . .

Call it the party at Pringle Creek: A sense of belonging has taken root even before the homes arrived. “I don’t think community is a stagnant thing,” Sue says. “We’ll learn from every participant and every project.”

We at this blog page have introduced the Wilsons, here.
But you would learn more if you could read the whole article, which isn't available on the internet. So consider subscribing to this cool new magazine. Meanwhile, take a look at the two Portland Spaces blogs, and in particular this blog item about buildings planned for Portland.

Photo above: Spaces editor-in-chief, Randy Gragg, unveils the magazine’s premiere cover.