Gallery: Twitter Co-Founder Irks Neighbors with Plans to Raze $3 Millio...


Twitter co-founder Evan Williams’ plans to build a state-of-the-art net zero energy house in San Francisco has the neighbors up in arms. Why? His green dream home involves tearing down a 1911 $3 million beauty. Before Williams even submitted a plan, 240 opposition letters from neighbors filled the planning department’s (virtual) mailbox.

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  1. CaliforniaArchitect August 21, 2012 at 10:17 am

    As an architect myself, it’s easy to see that this house is naturally an eco-friendly house. The work in tearing down (or for that matter, the impracticable matter of moving) all of the materials and work (in energy units) that went into erecting this house, PLUS the work and energy in putting up the new “green” house and the expenditure in the loss of natural materials added to the relatively low efficiency of manufactured parts (about 25% efficient), PLUS the additional 2,700 square feet of construction (enough for a “green” house on its own), we get a “NET Negative” that would keep the existing house going for the next century, through and past the year 2100. To call the replacement of this house “green” is pure vanity at best.

  2. mskky August 16, 2012 at 3:34 pm

    The desire to demolish an existing property that is in good condition and which embodies not only history but also irreplacable craft and material value is foolishness with an eco-spin. In the climate where this site is located, it’s entirely possible to introduce interventions to reduce the energy and water waste represented by the daily use impacts of the existing structure. It’s also likely that the new design is not going to embody the same level of handicraft as the 1911 version because it’s simply not available in the building industry any longer. If the owner wants a clear building site on which they can make a positive impact, there are plenty of brownfield sites just waiting for a willing and visionary owner.

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