As architectural consultant to Green & Lean—a company that purchases and renovates existing homes employing energy-saving, space-maximizing, and environmentally conscientious features—we designed the renovation of an 850 square-foot house built in 1925.

The project serves as a case study in “sustainability”—a term originating in the ecological sciences to describe how ecosystems thrive in dynamic balance particular to their context—and highlights how construction may lower its overall “footprint” and find a more ecologically-sound fit with the environment.

Strategies include:

native landscaping with a “dry-creek” cistern to capture runoff;

photovoltaic fans, low-E glass, eco-stucco, recycled countertops and flooring;

low-flow fixtures and cellulose insulation that exceed code requirements;

and, reuse of demolition material on-site instead of contributing to landfills.


John R. Byram, Architect
Roy Leisure, Landscape Architect
Elizabeth Zampolli, Sustainability Strategist
L. Norman Howe, Green & Lean President
George deMoss, Project Manager
Emil Cabal, Mechanical Engineer
Robert Calla, General Contractor