One important aspect of building and/or renovating home in Maui is to make sure that what you’re doing does not harm or disrupt the environment or the landscape.
For those looking to go further, building an eco-friendly or “green” home is one more way to decrease their carbon footprint and do more to live a sustainable lifestyle.
If you’re an architect interested in giving your clients the kind of sustainable home your clients are interested in, it’s easy: you just go green.
Green Architecture Explained
Also called “green design,” this is the field of architecture that focuses on minimizing the harmful effects of construction on the environment and human health. Using eco-friendly designs, construction practices, and building materials, a green architect designs homes and other structures that utilize elements such as:
- Water-conserving plumbing and fixtures
- Alternative sustainable power sources such as solar and wind, including water heating
- Rainwater collection and productive re-use of “greywater.”
- Maximizing the use of wind, natural sheltering and sunlight while optimizing the home’s location on the land
- Incorporated of reclaimed and recycled materials such as architectural salvage
- Using locally obtained and responsibly harvested materials, such as wood and stones (this reduces the need for long-haul transportation of these materials)
- Ventilation systems designed for energy-efficient heating and cooling
- Using native vegetation for landscaping and to optimize passive solar energy
- Adapting older buildings for re-use
- Energy-efficient appliances and lighting fixtures (i.e., Energy Star® Products)
- Minimizing damage to the natural habitat
Fueled by consumer demand for greener homes, homeowners are choosing greener options like these to
Becoming A Green Architect
Currently, becoming a “green” architect is a niche within the field. But in the future, it’s possible that there won’t be, and that all architects will be “green.” For now, there is a difference.
Of course, to become an architect, the process is the same—study architecture and earn a bachelor’s degree at a university with a program accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB). These are generally five-year programs, with masters and doctorate degrees available. After graduation, you’ll need to have several years of work experience before you can take the Architect Registration Examination (ARE) to get a license.
During these programs, there may be opportunities to study green architecture and sustainable design, but they’re not a requirement for the degree program. Independent study of green building best practices and a desire to learn about green architecture is someplace to start. It’s also important to keep current with trends in green architecture. These publications are dedicated to green architecture, design, building, energy, and other aspects of sustainable construction.
LEED also offers professional credentialing for those interested in sustainable design, such as building homes and building design. Maintaining the LEED Green Associate credential requires 15 continuing education courses every two years.
PRO DRAFT CAN HELP BUILD YOUR GREEN HOME
We understand your desire for a greener, more sustainable space, and we can help you achieve it. Pro Draft offers Green Building & Leed Certification for your next home or home remodeling project. Whether you want to start small or go all-in, we have the resources and experience to do it for you. Pro Draft can help design your new “green” Hawaiian home or building with LEED certification.