by , 10/26/05

Next up on the list of fabulous, environmentally-conscious prefab: Living Homes. With an immanent launch in Santa Monica, Living Homes is preparing to debut a structure that incorporates the key elements of eco-friendly home construction with an aesthetic that gracefully updates classic Southern California modern style.

With legendary architect Ray Kappe as their first designer, this aesthetic is coming straight from its progenitor. Founder of Sci-Arc and recipient of numerous awards, Kappe’s residential work “has been characterized as ‘the apotheosis of the California wood house.’ Clear systems, harmony with nature, and environmental considerations are hallmarks of his approach.”

From the scant details that have been provided to create proper suspense (it’s working), we learn that the use of substantial natural light, FSC-certified wood, solar energy and green roofs will enhance the value of the home both financially and in terms of human and environmental health. Features like smart technology allow residents to adjust comfort and security levels remotely, and built-in modular interiors accomodate rearrangements for guests and growing families.

The first Living Homes community is being developed near Joshua Tree National Park, where the stark beauty of the landscape is a perfect backdrop for the spare elegance of the homes. In true Southern California style, the concept is holistic: the health of residents and the health of the land are vitally linked, so to preserve and maintain their vitality, we need homes that provide mutual benefit to both. Ergo, Living Homes.


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  1. Douglas Calitto August 24, 2008 at 11:38 pm

    I ‘m in the need to built our home whats the price per square foot and if possible hillside

  2. Sean Robertson March 12, 2008 at 6:36 pm

    We are building a house in Dublin Ireland and are wondering how much (roughly) it would cost to get an eco friendly house as the one shown on grand designs. I believe its the one shown on this site.

  3. JBR November 3, 2007 at 1:09 pm

    The Living Homes prototype green house in Santa Monica is another great toy for the rich!
    When someone comes up with an affordable (for the average American), totally green, conventional looking house that fits into a regular regional neighborhood (i.e. Colonial in the east, Prairie style in the midwest, Adobe in the southwest, etc.), then we can get excited!
    Re-educate the builders around this country, and wean them off stick built wasteful homes. Teach them (for free) to use a lot of local, recycled, prefab sections to avoid waste, and labor. Facilitate connections between builders and green suppliers, and initially make the supplies affordable!
    It is done in other countries. Look at how they do it instead of re-inventing the wheel! Places with long dark winters build their houses in sections, in totally enclosed factories, and when they arrive on site the house is up and weather proof within one day. The slab or basement is done ahead of time. The waste is recycled within the factories, and local materials, without harsh chemicals, are used.
    This country is the highest user of resources than anywhere else in the world. We need to take drastic measures to launch a massive green movement right here at home. If the cost of gas needs to go up to $7.00/gal (as it is in Europe) to force people to re-think, then so be it!

  4. Jeri October 24, 2007 at 6:25 pm

    I am doing a project on J apanese home and I need to buld a modle of one and garden too can you give me some tips on how a tradional Japanese home would look like plus garden thaks a million

  5. Amy Masters August 20, 2007 at 4:57 pm

    I am an architectural studies major at the University of Kansas, and I was wondering if you could send me the actual floor plan and other possible photos of this home. We are learning the basics of auto cad and are supposed to find a home and or building design which includes an interesting floor plan and front, side, and back elevations. If you could email me those it would be great, or could get back to me at that would be wonderful.

    Thanks for your time,
    Amy Masters

  6. Inhabitat » Blog ... August 4, 2006 at 5:18 am

    […] One of the most beautiful, flexible, and complex prefab systems we’ve covered in the last year is the Ray Kappe designed Living Home. For better and worse, it was covered this week in the LA Times by writer Christopher Hawthorne in the article “Such a deal?” Although he addressed several shortcomings that bother us about the current prefab industry, we can’t help but feel he cast a harsh light on prefabs in general based upon this high end model. […]

  7. miles57 November 10, 2005 at 12:35 am

    Very interesting design and sustainabilty features. Looks like it could be pretty pricey though… like to see how it compares to FlatPak, Resolution 4, Glidehouse, etc. in terms of $/sq. ft. Great that there will be some models to tour right here in SoCal!

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