Sometimes a house isn’t a home until you've played a role in adding the finishing touches, especially when your ideas fit into personal viewpoints regarding the environment. Today, green architects allow eco-conscious homeowners to create tranquil, cutting-edge, and inviting living spaces fashioned out of recycled materials, sustainable woods, and energy-saving features.
Helping to shape the dreams and visions of clients, Tina Govan is an award-winning green architect who works with residences and businesses to create custom designs. Govan has extensive experience working with the intricacies of specific sites to meet the needs of clients at her architecture firm based in Raleigh, North Carolina.
A Sample of Tina Govan's Green Projects
Tina Govan worked with the Martins to incorporate their existing home with the surrounding landscape, including two massive trees. The goal was to create a sustainable residence that fit well into a neighborhood that was less dependant on gas-guzzling transportation. Govan outfitted the home with "a geothermal heat pump, SIPs (Structural Insulated Panels) construction, and solar hot water panels for radiant heat and domestic use" – just to name a few environmentally conscious upgrades.
Local, salvaged and/or recycled materials were used to construct the home of the Martins' dreams. The decking of the inviting porch is actually comprised of recycled milk jugs.The family would benefit from rainwater collection. The landscaping took advantage of native, drought tolerant options.
Selected as part of a nationwide search to become one of the first six homes showcased on Discovery's new "Planet Green" network, the Martin Residence claimed a spot on the TV show "Renovation Nation," which focuses on sustainable homes. This particular residence was also highlighted in the January 2010 issue of Architectural Record's Green Source magazine, chosen as a "Home of the Month" for 2009, and featured in the Raleigh News & Observer in an article titled "Raleigh Eco-home Shines on National Show."
When building the Stein Residence, Govan worked alongside Mr. Stein, as he took an active role in the construction of his home. All of the interior trim and flooring of the house is heartpine – cut from timbers Mr. Stein recycled from a downtown Chattanooga warehouse he disassembled himself. Another personal touch of the home that relates to Stein is the history behind the stones used to construct the fireplaces, benches, railings, and other features of the residence. Salvaged from demolished road curbs and garden walls, many of the stones were cut by Stein's great grandfather, who was a stonecutter by profession.
Govan built the home with the intentions of allowing the stone columns, wall, and floor slab to provide thermal mass, which absorbs solar radiation that passes through a high wall of south-facing glass. During the summertime, the Stein residence will enjoy the naturally cooling effects of valley winds, which also provides ventilation for the living space.
In many of Govan's green building designs, she utilizes the location of windows and other details to provide maximum, natural, energy-saving qualities.
If you are interested in transforming your living or business space into a green hideaway, contact Tina Govan's architecture firm at:
513 Holden Street
Raleigh, NC 27604-1946
Photo: The Martin Residence