building materials research
From: Sue C Salem (
Date: Tue, 5 Apr 1994 17:49:45 -0400 (EDT)
Hi coho folks,

I'm on New View's "Materials Committee" investigating various building 
material options. I'm wondering if any of you know about Internet 
resources about this topic, or have relevant experience from your 
cohousing groups that you can share.  Out of curiosity, how did existing 
groups do their materials research (e.g., by committee?  the architect?  

Specifically, we want to know how different types of siding compare on:

        * cost (upfront material and labor cost, and maintenance cost)
        * impact on the environment and inhabitants' health
        * toxicity in fabrication
        * aesthetics
        * lifecycle and durability
        * availability
Some of the siding alternatives we're looking at include:
        * cedar shingles 
        * cedar clapboard
        * oriented strand board (OSB)
        * aluminum siding
        * vinyl siding
        * "hardiplank" (concrete with wood fibers formulated into planks)
        * any other options (not brick or stucco)

When considering options such as cedar, there are are series of questions 
regarding white vs. red cedar, old vs. new growth, and untreated vs. 
painted or stained.

I'd appreciate any advice anyone has on this or other building material 

  -- Sue Cunio Salem              *  scs [at]
                                  *  35 Ashfield Street
                                  *  Roslindale, MA  02131
                                  *  (617) 327-9087
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