Re: Re: Density, detached vs attached
From: tom ponessa (
Date: Tue, 24 Jan 95 21:17 CST
I am interested in the ongoing debate re density esp. Vicky's view about
living lightly. If I have it right you believe this means row housing and
argument is that it saves on materials, energy etc... To me row housing
almost always means a developer and standard construction practices -
notwithstanding that you may go solar, high efficiency heating, high
R-value glazing and so on.

Now I decide to join you and being the unorthodox contrarian that I am
I say I am building a single dwelling in post & beam with salvaged
timbers and using straw bale (the ultimate solar building material)
for walls. I also plan on using a masonry heater and a radiant floor
(I want a one storey house for the day I can't navigate stairs) both
of which store heat and release it slowly. I will be burning softwood
at better than 90% efficiency. I will have R-40 walls. I might even top
it with a sod roof and use the snow accumulation as insulation.

Yes my home takes up more land than yours but yours will be a
bigger drain on resources both initially in construction and in the
long term for heating. I, too, claim to be living lightly on the land.
Life cycle environmental costing would put my detached house
ahead of any conventional row house.

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