ArchiCAD Helps "Green" Mobile Home Communities
Boston, October 9, 2007 - Altius Architecture, Inc. is re-inventing the traditional mobile and vacation homes by offering eco-modern alternatives for "green"-minded communities.
Altius recently acquired 45% of the Sustain Design Studio – creators of the award-winning eco-friendly miniHome vacation cottage – and is now selling the portable prefabs en masse to organizations seeking to build affordable, ecological park communities. Sustain Design Studio is still the principal designer of all models in the miniHome lineup.As part of its new business plan, Altius is designing eight new models of the miniHome using Graphisoft’s ArchiCAD to offer a variety of sizes and options suitable for mobile park living. The architects also provide master-plan design services for the entire community, as well as perform simulations using a variety of energy modeling tools to minimize the environmental impact of the dwellings and infrastructure. The miniHome models can be adapted to the extremes of southern, ocean and even arctic climates and can be further optimized by orientation, glazing and shading options to take full advantage of the natural assets of each mobile home community.
The miniHome has earned worldwide acclaim for its blending of sustainable design, contemporary beauty and affordability. The mobile home models will sport many green features including low VOC finishes, sustainably harvested lumber, recycled materials, natural ventilation, roof gardens, minimal construction waste and 100% renewable energy systems.
The miniHome project also uses Electrigon, an ArchiCAD-based electrical energy load modeler developed by architect Andy Thomson that automatically calculates electrical loads from all the fixtures in a building to achieve maximum energy efficiency. The Electrigon is available for free at http://www.archicad.ca/?p=70.
"We want to re-invent the notion of mobile home or vacation home communities based on sustainable development," said Thomson, designer of the miniHome. "Imagine communities which combine the beauty of the natural surroundings with community gardens and aquatic facilities and energy-efficient homes powered by solar-thermal and solar-electric panels. ArchiCAD has enabled us to not only model the building geometry, but to push the envelope in creating cool, contemporary, eco-intelligent communities."