This blog follows the latest trends in high performance housing from an insider's perspective. I am the General Manager of one of Ottawa's leading homebuilders - Urbandale Construction, and it gives me a firsthand view of how the industry is changing. I've seen the barriers that builders face when trying to market new technologies and I've been working directly to overcome these barriers to bring new energy efficient designs into Urbandale homes.
This post is a little overdue, but I just couldn’t bring myself to write it earlier. I have officially left for Vancouver and moved on from my position as General Manager of Urbandale Construction. It’s been a wonderful experience and I am extremely grateful to all of the excellent and dedicated staff that have made [...]Read more
On Nov. 18th I was invited to give a presentation as part of the Carleton Sustainable Energy Research Centre Lecture Series. My presentation was on the Business of Green Housing. Numerous surveys indicate that consumers are willing to pay more for energy efficient homes, but sales statistics across the country and my own personal experience [...]Read more
Cross posted from the Ottawa Citizen on Oct. 23, 2014. Canada has many examples of innovative green building projects, but without your financial support, most would never have succeeded. Some examples: In the Drake Landing community in Okotoks, Alta., 52 homes are connected through underground pipes that deliver heating supplied by solar panels. A [...]Read more
Construction has officially started at the Urbandale Centre for Home Energy Innovation which is being built on the Carleton University Campus. The centre is being built to Urbandale’s home specifications and will be used to study future technologies designed to reduce the energy use in homes. We’re really excited about this project because it has [...]Read more
Cross posted from the Ottawa Citizen on Sept. 13th, 2014. It seems like home prices keep going higher. While this may be good news for investors, it reduces the quality of life for anyone who has to put more money toward mortgage payments and makes it difficult for first-time buyers to enter the market. Housing [...]Read more
Designing Homes for Cleaner Air Cross posted from the Ottawa Citizen on July 30, 2014. The air in our homes can be up to five times more polluted than outdoor air, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. That’s kind of scary when you think about how much time we spend indoors. Toxins in the air [...]Read more
Cross posted from the Ottawa Citizen July 5th, 2014 What type of housing do you think has the smallest environmental impact? If you’re picturing a cabin in the woods, think again. Actually, high-density living, such as a downtown apartment building, is much more environmentally friendly than living in a rural community. It may surprise you [...]Read more
I have a new column called “Modern Housing” which will be appearing monthly in the Ottawa Citizen. I hope to use this forum to bring attention to issues facing the housing industry, with a focus on energy efficiency and affordability. Thanks to the folks at the Citizen for giving me this great opportunity!Read more
On Friday I was a guest judge at the final presentations of Carleton University’s High Performance Housing group. I’ve been involved with the High Performance Housing group for a number of years now, acting occasionally as a guest lecturer or mentor to some of the groups. This year I wasn’t as involved in the project as [...]Read more
Dr. Behrokh Khoshnevis at the University of Southern California is developing a completely new way to build houses using a large-scale version of 3D printing technology. This innovative approach, called Contour Crafting, works by using a large robotic arm with a nozzle that can spray fast drying concrete in layers according to a predetermined design. [...]Read more
ABOUT URBANDALE CONSTRUCTION:
Ottawa's Quality Homebuilder for 30 Years. Building R-2000 and Energy Star Homes in Kanata Lakes, Riverside South, & Bridlewood in Ottawa, and in eQuinelle in Kemptville. For more information on Urbandale Construction, please visit www.urbandale.com.