energy and resource efficient construction at a price the planet can afford

energy and resource efficient construction at a price the planet can afford

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Parade Magazine

Houses to Save the Earth by Seth Shulman (March 3, 1996)

Parade Magazine 1You are walking on the casings of used fluorescent bulbs," says Steven Loken, pointing to the ceramic floor tiles in his master bathroom. The rich blue tiles around the tub were made from recycled car windshield glass. It's the kind of detail Loken loves to volunteer about the dream house he built on the out- skirts of Missoula, Mont. In the kitchen, the sink looks like it is made of stone, but Loken explains that it was molded from epoxy and granite dust-a byproduct left when granite is quarried. The carpets upstairs were once plastic milk jugs, from the foundation to the roof tiles, the split-level house is made almost entirely of recycled materials.Houses to save the earth.

Despite the sound of it, the house Doesn't look newfangled or avant-garde. In fact, without Loken's animated descriptions, a visitor would never guess the origins of the materials--a feature he says was important when he set out in 1990 to build his "recycled" house. "I wanted to show that you could use re- cycled building materials without making any compromises on the type of house most Americans want," says Loken. "This meant that the place had to look like any other house if the ideas behind it were going to catch on."

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