Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Green Home Design in Denver

Each year, HGTV searches for  a leading “green” community and local builder to showcase the latest and greatest in sustainable home design.  This years Green Home is in the Stapleton redevelopment area of Denver, Colorado.  Being a Denver Interior Designer, I was in line to see the home as soon as it opened up to tours last week.
Before we get to the highlights, a few quick notes about the Stapleton redevelopment area for those who aren’t familiar with Denver. Stapleton is the old Denver airport, which was replaced by the Denver International Airport in 1995. In 1990, the Stapleton Redevelopment Foundation was created to determine best uses for the 7.5 acre site. The vision: community as a “Neo-Urban Lifestyle.” A blend of the best of the urban with the best of the suburban: convenient, accessible and cultured along with safety, outdoor space and a clean, family community. 30 percent of the space would be reclaimed into open green space, parks and nature preserve. And, town centers with grocery stores, restaurants and retail would crop up next to homes,  making for a walkable and outdoor-driven community. For more visit or HGTV.
What’s green about the Denver HGTV Green Home?
  • LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum Certified  by the US Green Building Council. (LEED Platinum is the highest green certification out there).
  • HERS (Home Energy Rating System) score of 38, when most homes built to code today score 100 (lower is better, in case you hadn’t already sorted that out)
  • Energy Star certified
  • Significatn recycled and reclaimed content including beetle-kill wood and pieces recycled from the former airport
  • Built with locally sourced materials whenever possible
  • Solar energy system providing 75% of home’s electricity
  • Most furniture and accessories made with eco-friendly fabric and materials
  • Most artwork is original work by local artist and purchased at local shops and galleries
Now the highlights of the interior design and decoration…
Entrance/Front Yard
My favorite piece here is the retaining wall. Not only does it add an interesting texture in the landscape design, but it is made from the blast screen that used to be between the old airport and the highway. That is clever and beautiful reuse! Other Eco-friendly features include the xeroscaping and a permeable walking surface that captures and redistributes the water.
Denver Interior Design
Great Room
The overall interior design of the home is smaller, with a focus on natural light and smart, functional, and multi-purpose spaces. Do more with less. The living room, kitchen and dining rooms are all open to each other. It’s compact, but very functional design. The interior decorating is fun, with a focus on eco-friendly products all sourced from Denver resources.
Living Room Interior Design ColoradoYes, that is a chair made of reclaimed radiators. No, I was not allowed to sit in it and do not know if it is comfortable. If not, at least it’s interesting artwork and 100% recycled.
Custom Funriture Denver ColoradoCustom Kitchen Denver Colorado
“Do” Room
This multi-purpose room features laundry, and three separate pull-out, hide-away work stations. Again, it’s a compact, but highly functional interior design plan.
Colorado Interior Designer
Upstairs Loft
The upstairs loft area is another comfy family room with great natural light and views. It’s an ideal place for kids or adults. Great local Denver art adds fun and color to the interior design plan.
Colorado Interior DecoratorThere are 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, a loft and a nook/office space upstairs. Check out the online tour for more photos of the spaces not seen here.
Master Suite
In place of a traditional headboard, the entire wall of the master suite is clad with pine beetle-kill wood. It doesn’t feel rustic, but adds a great reclaimed natural element to the room. All Interior doors in the home are also reclaimed beetle-kill wood and they are beautiful (see below).
Colorado Interior Decorator
My Favorite Design Element
This door is to the master bath. Look closely and you’ll see a motion detector in the upper corner of the door opening. This motion detector senses when the bathroom door closes, then starts heating the water for the mater bath. No waiting for the hot water to reach upstairs, wasting gallons and gallons each day.  Brilliant! From the decorating standpoint, I really love these sliding “barn-style” doors and the frosted glass, which continues to let natural light flood the whole home.
Denver Interior Decorator
Outdoor Spaces – Front and Back
Both the front and back yards feature large seating areas to enjoy the Colorado weather and views.
Colorado Interior and Exterior DesignDenver Interior Designer
If you can see the home in person, it’s well worth the time and money and all proceeds go to a Denver charity, Urban Peak. Urban Peak helps homeless youth and those at risk of becoming homeless to overcome real life challenges by providing essential services and a supportive community, empowering them to become self-sufficient adults.
Can’t see the Green Home in person? Take the virtual tour.
What’s your favorite part about the Denver Green Home?

Beautiful Habitat: Interior Design & Decoration

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