Reston, VA (PRWEB) March 16, 2011
New Home Builders Go Green
Going green has gone from a buzzword of the past to a reality of the present. Stanley Martin Companies, an award winning new home builder have made shifts in the way they go about their home building approach in an effort to become less wasteful and greener. Just as these shifts have changed much of the routine parts of daily lives of people, the green cause has changed the way Stanley Martin Companies build new homes for them, and the way the company do business.
Embracing Green Building Practices
Stanley Martin, a new home builder, is embracing green building practices in every phase of its homebuilding process — this means that throughout the design, development and construction process, Stanley Martin take building design, material specifications, construction and building science applications into account to minimize their overall environmental impact and to provide efficiencies for homeowners in the operation of their new homes.
The company’s dedication to green building practices begins with their Land Acquisition Team, whose focus is on acquiring sites closer to where their customers work. Locations are chosen for their close proximity to shopping, health care and entertainment, thus maximizing mass transit opportunities and minimizing time spent in vehicles that consume energy resources. This acquisition strategy allows the company to build homes that are closer to urban and suburban hubs throughout the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.
The Land Development Team for Stanley Martin new home and their luxury home sites apply resource-efficient site design and development practices, by working closely with its engineers and planners to protect wetlands, save trees, create resource-protected areas and to design and build on-site storm water retention/infiltration systems. They also focus on minimizing impervious surfaces and preserving natural water and drainage features. Common area and buffer landscaping is designed to limit water demand and to enhance the natural environment.
Architectural Portfolio Re-tooled
The entire architectural portfolio of Stanley Martin has been re-tooled to offer smaller, value-driven new home designs that have less impact on the environment and that appeal to this larger, more diverse market. Additionally, they incorporate green products into their new homes as standard features, as well as to provide a variety of Optional Energy Saving and Conservation Products, such as:
- Foam Insulation Package (Improves Energy Efficiency and Air quality)
- Heating and Air Duct Sealant (Energy Building Application)
- Energy Star Appliances (Energy Conservation Products)
- Compact Florescent Bulb Package (Energy Conservation Product)
- Tankless Water Heater (Water Conservation Product)
- Trash/Re-cycle Bin (Encourages Re-cycling)
- Plumbing Fixtures (Water Conservation Product)
The integration of green building materials and advanced building systems is part of their on-going collaborative effort between their in-house Architectural and Purchasing Teams, and their third-party Structural and Mechanical Engineers as well as Manufacturers and Distributors.
During the new home and luxury home design phase, resource efficient designs and materials are chosen to maximize function and use of natural resources.
The application of “engineered” wood products such as I-joists, beams, sub-floor and wall/roof sheathing enable the company to use products that consume considerably less raw material than dimensional lumber or plywood.
Their suppliers uses SFI certified forest management and procurement systems to ensure the wood in Stanley Martin homes come from well-managed forests.
The steel I-beams are 100% re-cycled materials, which are engineered to meet structural load requirements, but which also conserve natural iron ore resources.
Reengineering Heating and Cooling Systems
Currently, Stanley Martin’s new home and luxury home Architects and Mechanical Engineers are re-engineering the heating and cooling systems so smaller, more efficient furnaces and air conditioners can be used. The ductwork is also being re-designed to be inside the insulated building envelope to eliminate excess heat or cooling loss.
Improved Building Efficiencies
Stanley Martin Companies are going green in their choices of new home and luxury home locations, building processes, and material choices, but the green power doesn't stop there.
Fabricated building components (wall panels and roof trusses) are built in a controlled environment, so that every 2” x 4” greater than 8” is used in the wall panels and/or roof trusses.
Smaller pieces of lumber are used in the vertical webs, ribbon blocks, wedges or splice blocks, and left-over pieces less than 8” are ground into sawdust and sold as fertilizer, so that little wood is wasted in the process.
Stanley Martin new homes Production and Purchasing Teams continually collaborate with Trade Partners to improve building efficiencies and the elimination of waste by standardizing building applications, architectural details and trade partner scopes of work. In addition, they have incorporated Building Science Applications to increase energy efficiency by implementing thermal barriers in building cavities and areas impacted by unfinished conditions such as conditioned spaces in garages or attics.
Improving Energy Performance
At Stanley Martin, they continue to work on improving energy performance through a building systems approach that evaluates R-values, window selection, building envelope air sealing, duct sealing and application of air and vapor barriers from the foundation to the attic.
Their Design Studio and Purchasing Team select finish material specifications that are environmentally friendly, such as carpet and low-volatile organic paint (VOCs), natural stone countertops (granite) and recycled products. Their standard carpet has minimal environmental impact from “cradle to grave”. This is measured by a 6-step process called Life-Cycle Analysis (LCA), which includes product reuse, recycling and disposal. Products that use re-cycled materials include shaftwall liner, housewrap, carpet and interior trim, which are made from recycled wood fiber. Products manufactured from waste by-products also include roofing shingles and plumbing pipe.
The exteriors of their new homes include low maintenance products that don’t require paint or stain on finished surfaces. This includes the use of vinyl siding, windows and PVC window trim. These products are more durable than their wood counterparts, requiring fewer resources for replacement and repairs. Even their tree and shrub packages are selected from native species that require less maintenance and watering.
The company’s Purchasing Team also pays close attention to where a product is manufactured and the materials used for packaging. This practice not only lowers transportation and fuel consumption, it fosters the practice of re-using or recycling packaging and waste materials. Examples of products manufactured in this region include brick, windows, doors, concrete, drywall, paint and indigenous landscaping materials.
Prior to settlement, their Customer Service Team demonstrates to each customer how to maintain and operate each of the mechanical systems (Heating/Cooling, Plumbing and Electrical) and appliances in their new home. They also review the home warranty process and homeowner maintenance requirements, as well as product use and care guidelines.
Their goal is to educate the company’s buyers on how to maximize the homes durability and energy efficiency. After all, a properly maintained home is less expensive to operate and more comfortable to live in.
Other Green Sides
The other green side includes green practices implemented throughout the company’s operations level. The company has instituted a system-wide policy to reuse and recycle paper through the use of recycling bins and electronic communication and reporting. Their office building conserves energy by doing simple things, like turning out lights and lowering the t-stat on weekends. The Human Resource Team has implemented web-based pay statements, employee and benefits manuals to further reduce the use of paper.
At Stanley Martin Homes, they believe that their commitment to green building practices and energy conservation today and tomorrow is the right thing to do and is important to their homeowners, and that it will help provide benefits for future generations.
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