I’m a derelict, I admit it, overwhelmed by selling the last few houses I’ve built over the last couple of years and 737conserve, which has consumed more of my time than I ever could have imagined, I’ve failed in my own personal commitment to update the blog on the development of this house as promised.  So I promise both to myself and here in writing, to post at least a couple of updates a week until the house is completed and maybe even after that.

Today, August 27th, just a huge day over at 737 Milwood.  We passed our framing inspection on our first go around last week, and the house is finally receiving its non-toxic, and pretty wonderful product the Ultratouch Recycled Denim Insulation.

The installation company has never worked with the product before, and as much as I’ve tried they’re all walking around with masks over their faces so they don’t breathe in the shards that accompany normal fiberglass.  The problem is that the Ultratouch Recycled stuff is non-toxic, it doesn’t have shards and doesn’t require a mask or even gloves.

In any event my pleas to the installation crew went unresponded to and they are installing fully protected from something they don’t need to be protected from.

In addition, the stucco company sent out two stories worth of scaffolding, which marks another milestone.  It means the tedious process that finishes off the framing and all the wiring on the inside of the house, has been completed, inspected, and is ready for the next stage of construction.

Soon, within the next week, we will start wrapping the house with waterproof paper, and then the upper level of the house will receive stucco, and the lower level of the house will receive this beautiful sustainable, tropical hardwood we had milled into 6 inch tongue and groove siding.

Today also marked the day where the pool cover people came to the house and installed which looks like miles of track for the pool cover for this 25 meter lap pool.  The pool cover was an expense I was hoping to avoid, but in building the greenest house I can and having the water warmed by both an efficient heater system by Jandy, and solar panels on top of the garage, it would have been hard to look anyone in the face and explain why I don’t have a pool cover.

My original plan was to have the home automation system control the opening and closing of the pool cover by some type of heat thermostat, but I found out and it’s quite logical that the only way to close the pool cover is to do it manually.  Think of what might happen if someone’s swimming in there at night, the automatic control system closes the pool cover and they get trapped underneath, not a great idea.

We’re trying to incorporate as many futuristic, green, technological controls that I could in this house, and admittedly I am taken aback when I look at all the wire and cords that have been pulled through the house, to run all of the systems we have installed.  If less is more in the green world, have I made a mistake in loading up the house with so much wire and cable to control the various systems which will react to heat, sunlight, power resources, have I defeated the ultimate purpose by utilizing so much time effort and materials in achieving a technologically advanced cutting edge home?

As is the case when confronted with many environmental issues, there are tradeoffs, and my message in this house and my message to my friends, and business people who call me to consult, is to do what resonates with you.  Quite often there is no right or wrong, quite often it is just better to address your core beliefs and stay honest to that path.

You can’t have it all and I’m not sure there is an all, is bamboo flooring that ships from China, made of purely sustainable materials, worse or better than using a local hardwood for your flooring?

I’m certainly not smart enough to have that answer, but I think most of problem is resolved when you realize there is a problem and you know you have choices, and if that’s what 737 accomplishes I feel we’ve had a good day.

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