Green Design

June 1, 2021|


This journal entry is a repost of the original November 1, 2012 entry.


We are a recognized leader in environmental awareness and climate responsive design.  We see our exploding population as the primary threat to our planet’s resources and the “green washing” of every new building as too often little more than a marketing ploy.  “Sustainable development” is blatantly false and an obvious oxymoron. Elevating each new project to the highest and most thoughtful level which we are capable of is our ever present goal.


          “Responding (adapting) to the site and taking maximum advantage of environmental
            conditions, making efficient and elegant use of form and material, and preserving as
            much landscape as feasible have always been at the heart of my thinking.  Our planet’s
            most precious resource is life itself – deep ecology – and my thinking instinctively
            includes continuity of the ecosystem.”  OGB       


Our work utilizes many of the features now found in “green design, sustainable design, and LEED approved” buildings – not to accumulate points or credits, but rather because it’s the right thing to do.  These features are not an afterthought and are both seamlessly integrated and a purposeful part of the project’s composition.  This kind of efficiency results in the kind of harmony and grace that has characterized our buildings starting with our first project.

WALK-IN CABINS:  This initial project is a housing cluster with parking located remotely to minimize impact on the forest. The economical cabin form is a truncated cube to reduce surface area relative to the volume enclosed, and clear skylights provide natural lighting while providing views up into the boughs overhead (1).

BRUNSELL HOUSE: A classic passive solar project, this house is not only a part of the meadow, but the meadow is also a part of the house. This project effectively uses solar space and water heating, passive ventilation, natural lighting, and radiant floor heat as a backup system.  Excess water from the earth covered roofs and gravel driveway percolates back into the ground (2).


                                                                                                            (1)          (2)

SPRING LAKE PARK VISITORS CENTER:  Appearing as though Mother Nature herself has sown a building seed, the center harmonizes with its setting by placing solid walls into the  grade and using  glazed “roof walls” to  retain  the  translucency of  the forest, allowing  interior views up into the surrounding boughs.    Exterior redwood shading fins screen the sun and sky glare, becoming smaller and less translucent with height  – similar to the scale change of the surrounding trees (3).

OREGON COAST HOUSE and GARDEN HOUSE: Flying log buttresses allow expanses of glass and solar gain collection systems are used for space and water heating as well as generation of electricity. Rain water is also collected, passive ventilation utilized, recycled materials incorporated, and more (4).


                                                                                                         (3)          (4)

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