Gallery: IS IT GREEN?: The Megamansion


Florida real estate mogul Frank McKinney has been building homes for the super-wealthy for 20 years. Recently he decided to start building them green. Acqua Liana, the largest and most expensive home to aspire to LEED certification, is scheduled to be finished in February. The $29 million home is being built on Florida’s luxurious Manalapan beach. At 15,000-square feet, the house is three times as large and 25 times as expensive as any home trying to earn certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. McKinney estimates that building a green Acqua Liana cost 7 to 10% more than a non-green house of this type. But can it truly be considered green? We caught up with Frank to ask him a few questions about his latest project – read on for an exclusive interview.

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  1. SPG Architects Design O... August 9, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    […] masterpiece that is Casa Torcida. With 18,000 square feett of indoor and outdoor living space, this large home certainly couldn’t be considered to have a small footprint — but the size of the home […]

  2. Green Mortgage July 24, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    As long as the home generates a majority of the excess power it creates, I don’t see why this should be a problem. There are always going to be wealthy individuals who want large homes, wouldn’t it be best that if they are going to build them, to at least build them green and sustainable?

  3. firefly October 10, 2008 at 10:53 am

    I was waiting for the self-righteous to immolate this entry. I am glad to see some see the logic in this builder\\\\\\\’s great efforts in building green. The wealthy will do as they please with their money whether inherited or earned. This man is saying, \\\\\\\”Let\\\\\\\’s break the veneer of entitlement and give back.\\\\\\\”
    Now. For many of us, the square footage on this house is something we have either never seen or do not want to see. But, the fact is, these homes exist in many forms far more wasteful and less conscious than this home. I have seen many indignant judgements about \\\\\\\”McMansions\\\\\\\” and mine have been among them. There are many where I live – they have no plans on how to heat them, regulate water usage, harness the sun for electricity, nothing. They eat energy and resources and are extremely wasteful to build.
    Since the \\\\\\\”rich will always be with us\\\\\\\”, a step in the right direction to bring everyone along on the green/sustainable ride seems like a good thing to do.

  4. Jac October 10, 2008 at 2:58 am

    this is called Green Extravagance. Greener than the average luxury home, yes. But not economical.

  5. Aalto October 9, 2008 at 10:14 pm

    It is sad that some people think that the quality of space and the quantity of space are somehow the same thing in architecture.

  6. Ivan October 9, 2008 at 5:42 pm

    Let’s just not forget that 99% of the people will do what’s sexy and not what’s logical, so having rich people have LEED homes can go a LOOOOOONG way to have average goes want them…
    maybe Mtv CRIBS in a LEED Platinum home would be a good thing, no matter how ridiculous it might seem to the Ivy league ivory-tower resident…

  7. dimtick October 9, 2008 at 4:53 pm

    let’s face it. the ultra-rish are going to build mansions no matter what so might as well do everything we can to encourage them to be green.

  8. Avarana October 9, 2008 at 4:26 pm

    This uneducated blogger sees an awful use of space and resources; if you want to set an example, try not going the ostentous path, one easier to emulate and more sound in terms of footprint. Do we really doubt this will require lots of maintenance? Isn’t this also taking a lot of beach space?
    The “since 1970 the average home in America has grown by 40%” is a fact, but a sad one.
    But who knows, maybe I’m wrong and the MegaLEEDmansion is better than the Nature it replaces.

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