All the world is a stageJune 28, 2012
Officially Green 2.0October 4, 2011
Project #: 6134
Dear Thomas McGrath,
USGBC is extremely pleased to approve the certification of the LEED home(s) at 1610 North Honore Street, Chicago, IL, USA built by Thomas McGrath, and supported by the LEED for Homes Provider, Alliance for Environmental Sustainability. This project received a “LEED Platinum” rating. Congratulations! The certificates for this project will be ordered by your LEED for Homes Provider, Alliance for Environmental Sustainability. Project information for your LEED-certified project is recorded exactly as it appears below. If any of the information below is incorrect, please contact me ASAP so that alterations can be made.
Project AddressCityStateRating SystemLevelNumber to Print
1610 North Honore StreetChicagoILLEED for HomesPlatinum4
Congratulations on this great accomplishment! Look for an email shortly that will help get you started in celebrating your new LEED for Homes certified project. Please let our team know if you have any questions.
Associate, Residential Programmkania@usgbc.org
U.S. Green Building Council
2101 L Street NW, Suite 500,
Washington, DC 20037
http://www.usgbc.org | Direct: 202.595.3962 | Fax: 202.828.5110
Paint by NumbersDecember 7, 2010
With increased understanding of the effects of off-gassing of solvents and adhesives, more attention is now paid to Volatile Organic Compounds- VOCs- and how much is in any given product used in the home. From paints to sealants to floor coatings to glues to plastic cement, most contain certain amounts of VOCs.
Sometimes considered the contributer to sick building syndrome, VOCs have been known to irritate skin, eyes and nasal passages, cause headaches, nausea, to damage liver, kidney and central nervous system function and cause types of cancers.
LEED for Homes, prescribes limits for a variety of types of solvents and adhesives. For paints it sets a standard of 50 grams/liter for flat paint and 150 grams/liter for non-flat paint.
Our paint came from Eco deco and had VOC values of ZERO for flat and less than 40 g/liter for non-flat paint.
Eco Deco paints are specifically designed using the latest technology and manufacturing process to protect their customer and the environment. They only sell high performance soybean-based and acrylic-based products.
Soybean-based paints have a very low V.O.C level, do not contain any petroleum-based chemicals and are great interior projects. Acrylic-based paints have no V.O.C and can be used for both interior and exterior home projects.
Most of their products are “Ecolabel” certified. “Ecolabel” is the official European Union’s label for sustainable products and has higher standards than any regulation or certification in the United States (including the state of California).
The thing about VOC based products is that they weren’t developed just because they were unhealthy. They were developed because they worked well at binding things together and as a medium to spreading pigment. As many manufacturers have recently switched to low VOC, their products suffered and have tended not to perform well. Eco-Deco has been around for 25 years however and used extensively in Europe, and has developed the technology to produce a product that is both healthy and effective and we have been very happy with it.
Snapshots in timeNovember 28, 2010
USGBC TourNovember 24, 2010
Last week, the USGBC held its annual Greenbuild convention and conference at Chicago’s McCormick Place convention center. Colin Powell delivered the key-note address and attendance was estimated at 25,000 people.
Elemental building was part of a sold-out tour featuring urban residential projects and included attendees from Canada, Israel, Singapore, Brazil, the Hague as well as cities across the US. The tour was so popular a second tour was added to accommodate members of the Chinese Consulate and the Chinese USGBC.
In classic realty show fashion- the 50 person tour bus pulled up front as the general contractor was loading up the last of the left over materials on a truck out the back, and the cleaning crew was putting last-minute touches on the basement.
Field GreensNovember 22, 2010
Elemental Building was featured in an article in Chicago Magazine last week:
Maurie’s DoorsNovember 16, 2010
This is Maurie (along with me Tom, the developer).Maurie is 92, soon to be 93 and he’s lived in the neighborhood since 1919. In fact his grandfather bought the two houses across from 1610 in 1917. He grew up playing stick ball in vacant lots and his uncles ran a shipping service out of their 4 car garage. He’s a union brick layer, or at least was for many years. He still knows how to feather a joint as he displayed last summer when he borrowed some mortar and bricks to fix his brick garage. A year and a half ago he gave me 5 doors that his brother had pulled out of a hotel downtown during the 30’s or 40’s. He wasn’t sure what kind of wood but thought mahogany. Now they are in the elemental building.
On A Tile BasisOctober 28, 2010
Rain on my paradeOctober 21, 2010
Progress last week included polishing and densifying the concrete floor with a lithium based densifier and beginning the install of the kitchen:
Elemental Building- On the marketOctober 4, 2010
1610 N Honore is now officially for sale. More information can be found at: