This lovely seven-residence development was completed in Seattle in 2009, and is now upping its green ante by seeking LEED Platinum certification. Dubbed the Footprint at the Bridge, the building by Seattle firm Johnston Architects features rainwater collection and natural materials in an urban environment. Clad in FSC-certified wood, the V-shaped residential development is located in the Fremont district and has sweeping views of the Cascades as well as Lake Union.
Seven private residences are surrounded by a screen wall and vegetation to form a visual an acoustic barrier for the residences. The units are arranged in a V-shape around an interior courtyard and community garden with a good southern exposure for daylighting, warmth and solar gain for the garden. Environmentally friendly materials were used in the project including FSC certified wood, low-VOC emitting, non-toxic materials and finishes, and earth-toned concrete for floors. Daylighting, natural ventilation, views, and flexible spaces were all important design elements for the residences.
One of the main sustainable design strategies was the collection and reuse of rainwater in order to minimize city water usage. The residences collect rainwater from the rooftops and courtyard areas, which is then directed into a large cistern in the underground parking garage. Overall the building uses 100,000 gallons per year less than one built up to standard code-based construction. Additionally, the project uses 50% less energy than a standard Washington code-based building of the same size. The project is currently still seeking LEED Platinum certification.