INTERVIEW: Home Improvement Legend Bob Vila Talks to Us About Green Building

Allan Slope, Bob Vila conversation, Bob Vila Green, Bob Vila green building, Bob vila interview, Boston renovation, Cash for Caulkers, eco retrofit, existing building design, Green Building, green renovation, green retrofit, healthy materials, Hometime, micro wind power, solar design, solar thermal aesthetics, This Old House, Victorian restoration

Bob Vila’s name has been synonymous with home improvement since he helped launch This Old House in 1979. After nearly thirty years of producing and hosting television shows about the world of home design and improvement, he now showcases many of his ideas on his popular website, BobVila.com — a destination also packed with how-to articles and archived episodes. A pioneer of the adaptive reuse movement, Vila helped bring “green” thought to the forefront, and in more recent years he has focused much of his efforts on investigating sustainable building and design. Read on for our conversation with one of the most recognized voices in remodeling as he discusses green building, retrofitting, materials and energy, and how we need to recognize science and the role of government when we talk about policy.

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INTERVIEW: Architect Gordon Beckman on How Mixed Use Buildings Create Healthy, Sustainable Cities

 

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Metropolitan areas are growing faster than suburbs for the first time in decades, as more and more people want to live closer to where they work, eat, drink, and play. As populations in cities continue to grow, requests for mixed-use communities are pushing architects and planners to think of master planning and design in new ways. Understanding this societal trend, architecture firm John Portman & Associates contends that mixed-use design is the fabric that enhances urban environments, and has created mixed-use developments around the world. This firm strives to design walkable communities that still accommodate commuter access, and balance local authenticity with opportunities to experience culture and entertainment. We had the opportunity to interview architect Gordon Beckman, Partner and and Design Director at John Portman & Associates, about the future of mixed-use and sustainable cities.

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INTERVIEW: Inhabitat Visits the Studio of Photographer Elena Lyakir and Furniture Designer Eric Slayton

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Inhabitat recently had the chance to visit the studio of photographer Elena Lyakir and furniture designer Eric Slayton, a couple based in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Read on to see what the duo had to say about using reclaimed materials, life in New York City and collaborating with one another.

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INTERVIEW: Landscape Architect James Corner On NYC's High Line Park

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NYC’s High Line is a project that exemplifies effective adaptive urban re-use in a city that is littered with structures and spaces that have since reached the end of their useful life. By turning an abandoned, elevated freight train track into a public park, this project has redefined the New York experience, affording never-before seen views of the city’s surrounding natural landscape as well as an expansive and intimate look into one of the world’s most dynamic urban environments. With the completion of the rest of the High Line currently in the works, we couldn’t think of a better time to catch up with one of the brilliant minds behind the design of this beautiful public space. I recently sat down with landscape architect James Corner, the lead designer behind the High Line, to get his personal perspective on the what it was like to take an abandoned train track and turn it into one of NYC’s best loved spots of greenery. Read on for my exclusive interview with James Corner below…

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VIDEO: Inhabitat Interviews Metropol Parasol Architect Juergen Mayer H.

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BOOK REVIEW: Bridgette Meinhold's Urgent Architecture Showcases 40 Sustainable Housing Solutions for a Changing World

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VIDEO: Andrea Air Purifier Uses a Plant to Clean the Air in Your Home

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The Andrea Air Purifier is a brilliant partnership between man and plant that accelerates nature’s natural ability to clean air in order to detoxify the atmosphere inside your home. We had a chance to sit down with Tom Hadfield from Andrea to talk about how this amazing gadget is able to clean the air in your home 1000% better than a normal houseplant. Check out our video interview above!

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INHABITAT INTERVIEW: Water Architect Koen Olthuis on How to Embrace Rising Sea Levels

koen olthuis, koen olthius, waterstudio, waterstudio.nl, inhabitat interview, koen olthuis interview, floating architecture, global warming, storm surge, climate change, flooding, extreme flooding, rising sea levels, sea level rise, new york, jakarta, calcutta, miami, holland, dikes, design for disaster, flood-proof design, urban design, water issues, sustainable building, sustainable architecture, sustainable design, eco design, green design, green building, green architecture, city apps, floating buildings, floating cities, floating countries, maldives, kiribati, coastal cities

Sea levels are rising, floods are prevalent, and cities are at greater risk than ever due to climate change. Now that we’ve accepted these facts, it’s time to design and build more resilient structures. Koen Olthuis, one of the most forward-thinking and innovative architects out there, has a solution for rising sea levels. His solution: Embrace the water by incorporating it into our cities; creating resilient buildings and infrastructure that can handle extreme flooding, heavy rains, and higher water. Olthuis and his team at Waterstudio.nl have been showing coastal communities the benefits of building on the water. With countries like the Maldives and Kiribati having to build oceanside or move in order to escape rising sea levels, New York learning to battle storm surges, and Jakarta dealing with massive flooding, embracing water may be our only option for survival. We chatted with Olthuis about how coastal cities can become more resilient in the face of change—read on for our interview!

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INTERVIEW: James Dyson On Using His Famous Vacuum Technology to Suck Garbage From Rivers

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Danny Hess and the Search for a Sustainable Surfboard

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BOOK REVIEW: Bianca Bosker's New Book, Original Copies, Dissects China's Bizarre Knockoff Architecture Trend

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INTERVIEW: Architect David Benjamin on Building The World's First Mushroom Tower at PS1

 

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You may have heard the riddle about mushrooms being the only rooms with no walls, but David Benjamin is flipping the script on the old joke with some incredible mycotecture built from mushroom bricks! The architect and his firm, The Living, are pushing the boundaries of design by experimenting with biotecture, blurring the lines between biology and built environments. Their latest efforts have culminated in the world’s first tower made from fungus, which debuted at MoMA PS1 in Queens, New York last week. We recently had the chance to pick Benjamin’s brain about the future of mycotecture (mushroom architecture), the benefits of biological buildings and what inspired this innovative new Hy-Fi tower in Queens. Read on to see what the biotect, innovator and director of the “Living Architecture Lab” at GSAPP has to say.

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INTERVIEW: ECOBroker John Beldock on Green Real Estate

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Green homes are on the rise, but a world dominated by green real estate is far from reality. In this interview with ECOBroker John Beldock, we thought we’d take a look at ways to locate green homes that have already been built. We’ve covered lots of strategies that go into sustainable home design and construction, but how can you find a green home in your area? And how can we raise the demand for these properties?

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Meet the Tiny House Family Who Built an Amazing Mini Home for Just $12,000

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INTERVIEW: Building Science Pioneer Dr. Joe Lstiburek on the Good, Bad and Ugly Side of Buildings

Joe Lstiburek, Building Science, green building, Sustainable building, green building expert, green building expert, ASHRE, LEED, problems with LEED

The term ‘building science’ is used quite often now in sustainable building circles, but much of what we understand of it can be traced back to the work of Dr. Joe Lstiburek, founder of Building Science Corporation. He is anything but your typical engineer or scientist who spends time crunching numbers or hiding away in a lab. Lstiburek has spent most of his career out in the field, testing and examining what works and what doesn’t. Many of the building standards today — from building codes to ASHRE to testing methodology — have his finger prints all over them, and his tough love criticism of building design is undercut with his wry humor and, of course, an encyclopedic knowledge of building construction. Read on to learn where buildings go wrong and what we can do about it.

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The Easy Trick That Turns Your Regular Blender into a Magic Bullet Smoothie Machine

The Easy Trick That Turns Your Regular Blender into a Magic Bullet…

Want to make individual smoothies and juices for everyone in the family without having to shell out dough for a special blender? Check out this DIY video for an easy trick that will…

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INTERVIEW: Tiny House Pioneer Dee Williams Discusses Living Large in 84 Square Feet in Her New Memoir

INTERVIEW: Tiny House Pioneer Dee Williams Discusses Living Large in…

We've featured many a tiny house on Inhabitat, but did you know that one trailblazing lady was the inspiration behind many of those miniature homes? Meet Dee Williams: an early pioneer…

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INTERVIEW: We Talk to Lumio Folding Book Lamp Creator Max Gunawan

INTERVIEW: We Talk to Lumio Folding Book Lamp Creator Max Gunawan

We met up with Max at the Techshop in San Francisco, CA to see the Lumio first hand. At first glance the lamp looks like a simple hard-bound book or journal, but once you open it, the…

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INTERVIEW: 5+Design's Michael Ellis Discusses How Architecture Can Fight Obesity

INTERVIEW: 5+Design's Michael Ellis Discusses How Architecture Can…

Obesity has reached epidemic proportions in America, and countries around the world are quickly following suit. One thing most health and nutrition experts can agree on is that there's…

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DIY VIDEO: How to Make a Mason Jar Herb Garden with Model Summer Rayne Oakes

DIY VIDEO: How to Make a Mason Jar Herb Garden with Model Summer Rayne…

If you've always dreamed of having a little herb garden in your kitchen, here's a video DIY from our friend Summer Rayne Oakes that can bring that fantasy to fruition today. Follow…

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VIDEO: Mitchell Joachim on How to Grow a Treehouse with TeReForm

VIDEO: Mitchell Joachim on How to Grow a Treehouse with TeReForm

We love treehouses here at Inhabitat, and are enamored with eco-architect Mitchell Joachim's visionary ideas about how to grow living treehouses from ficus molded around frame…

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INTERVIEW: Eric Maundu on Turning Aquaponic Gardens into an Internet Connected Resource

INTERVIEW: Eric Maundu on Turning Aquaponic Gardens into an Internet…

Inhabitat: So tell me about your work here at American Steel Studios. ERIC: I build gardens like these. This is the smallest one I’ve ever done with an aquarium on the bottom and a…

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INTERVIEW: We Talk to Bicycle Library Founder Karta Healy

INTERVIEW: We Talk to Bicycle Library Founder Karta Healy

Last week, we showcased the Bicycle Library, which is pretty much exactly what it sounds like, and it was so unusual that we had to get in touch with its founder and pick his brain. We…

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Talking Public Space and Urban Intervention With San Francisco's Rebar Studio

Talking Public Space and Urban Intervention With San Francisco's Rebar…

INHABITAT: How did Rebar get its start? MATT: Rebar started around a project called the Cabinet National Library. We were inspired by an art magazine in Brooklyn called Cabinet,…

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VIDEO: High Line Section Two Opens in NYC!

VIDEO: High Line Section Two Opens in NYC!

Section two of New York City's High Line Park opened a couple of years ago to great acclaim, and Team Inhabitat were among the first to catch a glimpse of this amazing new green space!…

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VIDEO: Would You Eat Crickets? New Yorkers Give Them a Try

VIDEO: Would You Eat Crickets? New Yorkers Give Them a Try

Entomophagy, the consumption of insects as food, has been gaining popularity, and last week Inhabitat stopped by an event where curious New Yorkers were trying out the trend and tasting…

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Inhabitat Interviews Shiply Green Logistics Company Founder Robert Matthams

Inhabitat Interviews Shiply Green Logistics Company Founder Robert…

Inhabitat: Could you tell us how Shiply got started? How did you go from the first concept of the company to actually creating and growing Shiply? Matthams: I got the idea when I was…

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INTERVIEW: 8 Questions with Starbucks Global Responsibility VP Ben Packard

INTERVIEW: 8 Questions with Starbucks Global Responsibility VP Ben…

INHABITAT: Can you tell us a little about what drew you to work for Starbucks as Vice President of Global Responsibility? Ben: I came to Starbucks 14 years ago as Environmental Affairs…

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We Talk With Tracen Gardner of Reclaimed Space About Prefab Building & Salvaging Materials

We Talk With Tracen Gardner of Reclaimed Space About Prefab Building…

Why did you start Reclaimed Space? Tracen Gardner: The job came about because I’ve always been in the construction business. I had a ranch that was remote, and I questioned how I was…

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