Green Rowhouse Renovation Guide

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  • Our House

    What is Site EUI?

    At the end of 2011, my wife Claire and I purchased a house in Brooklyn. Since I’m Executive Director at Urban Green Council and Claire is also a committed environmentalist, we’re about as motivated as anyone to make it green. And since we both work for nonprofits, we’re also a good test case of the sort of options available for a middle-income couple.

    In designing our house, I was unable to find a good resource for what I thought would be pretty simple questions. That’s why Urban Green Council has added this Rowhouse Retrofit Guide to our web site. I hope you will find this a useful resource. Thanks to the many people who contributed to and edited this guide: Ellen Honigstock, Richard Leigh, Cecil Scheib and Chris Anjesky from Urban Green; the design team for my house, especially Gita Nandan (architect), and also Tom Chartier (engineer) and Bret Heilig (solar PV); as well as Ken Levenson (New York Passive House).

    The focus of this guide is on reducing home energy use, but it also covers a range of green building issues. Energy is emphasized because it can save the most money, and is the lynchpin of so many other environmental and health issues, including climate change, air quality and asthma rates.

    A strong resource that didn’t exist when planning my house is the Municipal Arts Society’s Green Rowhouse Manual. I recommend using this guide as the starting point and then digging into the MAS manual for more detailed information.

  • The House When We Started

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