Reclaimed timber clads a chic pool house near Californian vineyards

February 4, 2019 by  
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California-based architecture and design firm Ro Rockett Design recently added a pool house to a Sonoma County retreat that’s become so alluring, the clients decided to turn it into their full-time residence. Located in the northern California town of Geyserville, the property boasts stunning views of rolling vineyards and the rugged coastal landscape. The Dry Creek Pool House is carefully situated to take advantage of these impressive vistas and features a natural materials palette and minimalist design to blend in with the surrounding environment. Built as part of a narrow holiday home , the Dry Creek Pool House is the latest addition to the property’s growing amenities, which include the saltwater pool, outdoor living area, gardens, bocce court and guest arrival with overflow parking. To obscure views of the adjacent busy roadway, the architects sited the pool high on the property so that the raised pool edge would obstruct views of the road from the pool house, which boasts panoramic views of the landscape. “Nestled into the hill with it’s back to the trees, the new, earthen ground plane acts as a primitive plinth that supports a rustic enclosure,” the architects said in their project statement. “The prime program of the pool house is wrapped in grape stakes gathered from the property and re-sawn to operate as a shroud to the private innards of the building. This cladding provides solid walls where necessary and opens to the view where desirable.” Related: A lush green roof of native plants breathes life into this Texan cabana The modern and minimal design of the Dry Creek Pool House combined with a natural materials palette grounds the building into the landscape. The vine stakes that partly clad the building, for instance, were reclaimed from the fencing that had surrounded the site. The structure is also built of plaster and topped with a floating cedar roof. A stone terrace connects the saltwater pool with the pool house. The pool house celebrates indoor/ outdoor living and consists of an outdoor living space with a dining area and bar. Another sitting area can be found inside in addition to a mini-bar and bathroom. + Ro Rockett Design Images by Adam Rouse

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Reclaimed timber clads a chic pool house near Californian vineyards

Time-saving supersonic airplanes could be a disaster for the environment

February 4, 2019 by  
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Supersonic airplanes might be making a major comeback, but environmental scientists warn these time-saving transports will add even more greenhouse gases to the atmosphere than ever before. A group of regulators from around the world are scheduled to meet in Canada next week to discuss the impacts of supersonic travel on the environment. Ahead of the meeting, the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) published an article about how supersonic planes impact the environment . According to USA Today, the ICCT discovered that supersonic airplanes consume significantly more fuel than a standard commercial aircraft. In fact, these jets will use around five times the amount of fuel as a normal jet flying the same route. Supersonic jets consume more fuel because they are faster and carry fewer travelers. Companies in the aviation business previously agreed to cut down on carbon emissions by the year 2050, but with the threat of supersonic jets returning to the skies, ICCT director Dan Rutherford believes those goals will not be met in time. Related: Greenhouse gas emissions rose during 2018 after three year decline “Adding these planes, which could be five to seven times as carbon intensive as comparable subsonic jets, on top of that just to save a few hours flying over the Atlantic seems problematic to me,” Rutherford explained. The appeal of these jets is that they fly at a much faster rate than typical airliners and can cruise at higher altitudes. For example, a supersonic airplane could make it from New York to Paris in under four hours while a normal jet takes about eight hours to complete the same trip. This effectively cuts air travel time in half. There are three corporations from the United States that are seeking to build a new generation of supersonic airplanes for commercial use. This includes Boom Supersonic, which plans on building around 2,000 aircrafts, Aerion Supersonic and Spike Aerospace. The latter two companies are only planning on offering supersonic jets for business travel. This, of course, is not the first time supersonic jets have graced the skies. Air France and British Airways had a line of supersonic jets between the years 1976 and 2003. The companies stopped offering the service after an accident in 2000 took the lives of 113 passengers. They also had trouble selling tickets because the price of a flight was much higher than a conventional jet. Via USA Today Image via Jacek Dylag

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Time-saving supersonic airplanes could be a disaster for the environment

The fearless dog who refused to leave his goats during the Santa Rosa wildfire

October 17, 2017 by  
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It would seem that dogs, in addition to being man’s, are also best friends with goats and deer. Odin, a loyal, headstrong Great Pyrenees who guards his owner’s goat herd, refused to leave their side even when fierce wildfires bore down around his home in Sonoma County, California . “Even under the best of circumstances it is nearly impossible to separate Odin from the goats after nightfall when he takes over the close watch from his sister Tessa,” wrote Roland Tembo Hendel, Odin’s owner. “I made a decision to leave him, and I doubt I could have made him come with us if I tried.” Thankfully, even though buildings around their location burned to the ground, Odin and his goats survived and were even joined by a few adopted baby deer. Around 10:30, Hendel began to smell smoke at his property. About a half hour later, Hendel and his family caught their first glimpse of flames coming into their valley. After Hendel and his family gathered their other dogs and cat into the vehicle, they had to depart without Odin, who refused to leave his goats . “Cars behind us on Mark West Springs Road were pouring flames out of the windows as they roared down the road,” said Hendel of the scene. “Later that morning when we had outrun the fires I cried, sure that I had sentenced Odie to death, along with our precious family of bottle-raised goats.” Related: Frida the rescue dog helps search for survivors after Mexico’s deadly earthquake Hendel and his family were thrilled to return and find their animal companions alive and well. Although every nearby structure had been destroyed, Odin kept his flock safe from harm. “Eight goats came running to see us and get cuddles and kisses. Dixon has a burn on his back the size of a nickel. Other than that they are perfectly fine,” said Hendel. Odin received minor injuries from the fire. The baby deer that joined the herd found both shelter and clean water with the help of their new canine papa. “Odin has lived up to his namesake,” wrote Hendel. “Pray for him and his charges. He is our inspiration. If he can be so fearless in this maelstrom, surely so can we.” Hendel and his family are raising funds, half of every dollar for a replacement trailer for Odin and his goats and half for the Sonoma County Wildlife Rescue Center . After the trailer has been paid for, all of the proceeds will go to SCWRC. Donations can be made here. Via Treehugger Images via  Roland Tembo Hendel/Facebook

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The fearless dog who refused to leave his goats during the Santa Rosa wildfire

Spanish Winemaker Obtains Permission to Cut Down 154 Acres of California Redwoods

October 23, 2013 by  
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As California’s wine industry continues to grow, it has extended its search for suitable areas to grow grapes outside of the valleys and closer to the coast. But Spanish winemaker Artesa Vineyards and Winery is taking this quest too far with plans to destroy 154 acres of coastal redwoods and Douglas firs to make space for new grapevines. With one study indicating that areas suitable for vineyards in the world’s major wine-producing regions could shrink between 19 and 73 percent by 2050, it’s likely that the situation will get worse before it gets better. Read the rest of Spanish Winemaker Obtains Permission to Cut Down 154 Acres of California Redwoods Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 154 Acres of Redwoods , Artesa Vineyards and Winery , Calfornian Redwoods , california wine industry , Deforestation in California , Friends of the Gualala River , redwoods threatened by wineries , Sierra Club’s Redwood Chapter , Sonoma county , Spanish winery to cut down California Redwoods , The Center for Biological Diversity        

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Spanish Winemaker Obtains Permission to Cut Down 154 Acres of California Redwoods

The Cascade Project Transforms Disused Staircase into Inspiring Urban Space for Hong Kong Residents

October 23, 2013 by  
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Hong Kong based Edge Design Institute has converted an ordinary public stairway in Hong Kong into a striking, socially engaging public area called The Cascade Project. Located in The Centrium, the asymmetric mesh sculpture offers individual and adjoining seating areas surrounded by Bauhinia trees and assorted plants . In the evening, a strategic lighting system provides an inviting atmosphere that encourages a secure and sociable environment on top of the previously undervalued concrete structure. Read the rest of The Cascade Project Transforms Disused Staircase into Inspiring Urban Space for Hong Kong Residents Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: adaptive reuse , cascade , edge design institute , green spaces , Hong Kong , Hong Kong green space , Hong Kong urban design , public design projects , public space , The Cascade Project , The Centrium , Urban design , urban renewal        

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The Cascade Project Transforms Disused Staircase into Inspiring Urban Space for Hong Kong Residents

Chevy Volt Investment in Detroit Now $700 Million

December 8, 2009 by  
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GM has announced that it is investing another $336 million to fix up its Hamtramck assembly plant in Detroit, now bringing its total Detroit plant investment in building the Volt extended-range electric car to $700 million. First they’ll clear out the cobwebby remains of the Cadillacs and the Buick Lucernes they used to build there, and then they’ll rework those assembly lines to start rolling out something more in line with the times. The American people are not asking for so much.

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Chevy Volt Investment in Detroit Now $700 Million

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