ABC Green Home 1.0 Breaks Ground
Located at the Great Park in Irvine, Calif., the forward-thinking construction process marked a milestone of the ABC Green Home project.
By Lauren Felechner
Photography by Nick Kosan
“The fact that it’s been so long in the making and so many man-hours put into this project to see it actually come to fruition would be a great sense of pride for me.”
— John Morton, program manager, California Advanced Homes for Southern California Edison
It’s strange to think back to the beginning stages of the ABC Green Home project, discussing it around Peninsula Publishing’s conference table and putting the pieces together as to how this idea would become a reality. It goes to show that a mere idea between two people can become a solid creation that is the “Affordable, Buildable, Certified” (ABC) Green Home. Originated by Peninsula Publishing’s publisher, Nick Slevin and John Morton, program manager, California Advanced Homes for Southern California Edison (SCE), this concept is set to raise the bar for sustainable standards, affordable living, and inspiring innovation.
The ABC Green Home project is came into actualization at the groundbreaking at the Great Park in Irvine, Calif. With more than 100 project and product partners and its company team members in attendance, the ABC Green Home continued its transformation into a comprehensive, tangible household, but not without the perseverance and dedication from the partners that have stood behind the project since day one.
The groundbreaking celebration was one that was widely anticipated and an exciting gathering that consisted of ample preparation and notable industry names alike. Such attendees included: John Morton from Southern California Edison (SCE); Tim and Ben Anderson from BCA Development who partnered as the builders along with the BITA program; Manny Gonzalez, principal, KTGY Group, Inc., Architecture and Planning who is the designer of the project; as well as the Green Home Builder staff and many others. Matt Lynch, vice president and general manager of Sierra Building Products which is part of a nationwide network of Oldcastle, Belgard Pavers, a product partner on the project who commented on the groundbreaking ceremony, “It was a great event and it was good seeing everyone coming together. As busy as we are in the market right now, it’s good to touch base with these folks in different trades together.” Lynch continued, “It’s for a great cause and it was the first product I came across that has large players in the market such as Southern California Edison. You can see that there is a lot of credibility from some of the partners of the project. It’s about getting to meet people and doing something for the right reason.”
Developed to achieve Net-Zero energy, the ABC Green Home walls were already built and standing onsite as participants from seven different construction technology classes through separate high schools were each assigned sections of the walls to build after CAD drawings were prepared for them. With these drawings they built these wall segments in the classroom and then shipped those pieces to the site, according to Morton. In order to coordinate and achieve the desired third-party certification, Ben Anderson explained that, “During the construction process, we will be bringing in the people who certify different elements of the house whenever they are required, and we will see what works or needs to be changed, and it will be an ongoing process.”
Presented at the groundbreaking was the ABC Green Home virtual tour, which has been compiled by Ripple Creative Group and Dynamic Concepts, also utilizing the building and modeling software platform bsBIM by iPda. Chuck Good-Man, principal and founder, iPda, and Joe King, managing partner and director of advanced media, Ripple Creative Group, were both in attendance at the celebration and expressed their eagerness to see their virtual compilations come to life. “It was amazing to see that there were so many partners for this one single-family residence. Working in this new technology has been very rewarding, bringing people together in new ways. I’m also looking forward to the next step of the construction process and how to use these tools while they are actually building the home,” Good-Man explained. King added on, “I’m looking forward to the home being built and comparing the real environment to the virtual environment. Another important thing for me is to be able to look at different ways we can use this digital information to create new pipelines for marketing.”
The project team can taste completion of the ABC Green Home and the team is looking forward to that moment of achievement. Morton explained, “This is a 70 to 80 day build, so from the time we started two and one-half months to three months later, the house will be done and opened. So it’s going to be very fast-paced and fast moving forward.” Morton concluded, “Standing there cutting the ribbon, having the first people walk through a completed house is going to be greatly exciting to me because it’s just a sense of accomplishment. And the fact that it’s been so long in the making and so many man-hours put into this project to see it actually come to fruition would be a great sense of pride for me.”