Design Process & Energy/heating/design issues - interaction?
From: Jeffrey O. Hobson (
Date: Wed, 9 Nov 94 03:26 CST
Okay okay, so (at least 3 other) people want the thread to continue.

Then here's a general question on *how* to integrate energy and other
resource issues into the design process.  I asked this of Ray Gasser about
the Ithaca project, let me repeat it for a general response, defining the
question a bit beforehand.

This question is mostly directed at those of you who have gone through the
design process for moving in to a new site, or who are going through that
process now.

By "resource efficiency" issues, I mean solar energy, energy efficiency,
materials selection (for recycled content, minimal forest impact, etc.), and
public health (indoor air quality).

The questions are:

Who was involved in the design process?  Residents, an architect, other
professionals?  What expertises were present among the residents?

Who in your design group (cohousing residents, architect, other
professional) was most responsible for 
a) promoting resource efficiency issues (pushing consideration of
alternatives, etc)?
b) providing facts and information on alternatives, for the design group to
use for decision-making. 

What specific issues did you consider?  Which alternatives did you reject,
and why? and Which alternatives did you accept, and why?

What I'm looking for here is a better understanding of whether high-cost,
low-labor solutions, or low-cost, low-labor solutions play better in
cohousing, what information gaps there are, what level of enthusiasm and
commitment exists (among the myriad of other issues a developing group must
face), and what are the important barriers.

I look forward to some responses.

Jeff Hobson

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