Merit Award: New Model Remodel

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Creative design meets sustainable building in this LEED-Platinum whole-house remodel.

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Location: Ann Arbor, Mich.

Contractor: Doug Selby, Meadowlark Builders, Ann Arbor

Designer: Michael Klement, Ann Arbor

Dubbed the “Nautilus House” for its shape, this Ann Arbor home received certification as Michigan’s second U.S. Green Building Council LEED Platinum-level whole-house remodel. The client, a found-object artist and metal worker, “wanted this house to be a harbinger of innovative green design and construction,” architect Michael Klement says.

Without increasing the home’s footprint, Klement radically changed this typical suburban colonial into a visually arresting and environmentally sensitive residence where beauty meets functionality. “This is a dream house for a lot of people,” the judges said. “It’s sheer innovation and rule-breaking.”

The project uses state-of-the art building envelope techniques including cellulose insulation, engineered-wood products, spray polyurethane foam, and structural insulated panels (SIPs) to minimize energy loss. A photovoltaic roof array allows the home to make more energy than it uses during the summer. The standing-seam metal roof, which lasts longer than a standard roof, delivers clean water to rain-saving catchment containers, which can be used for the outdoor shower. Inside, flexible design strategies and an open floor plan make the 3,220 square feet of living space seem larger.

—Stacey Freed, senior editor, REMODELING.