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Building Science and Construction

Environment Associates is a full service architecture, consulting, and design counseling practice that wholistically addresses the LIVING COST of homes, and has specialized in Design for Healthy Passive Sustainability, Green Home Design, Passive Building Survivability, and Home Remodeling for nearly 40 years.  We provide solutions based upon building science to opportunities regarding passive survivability, renewable energy use, energy conservation, durable construction, pleasant appearance, efficient layout, indoor air quality, functionality, maintenance, and much more.  Nationally known for having invented and developed improved Southern Climate design and construction methods, our signature “eaDesign for Life™” services create beautiful, healthy, energy efficient, and durable green homes and remodeling for all budgets.  The homes that result have proven superior performance while significantly lowered our clients’ Living Costs wherever they are built.

Advanced and Conventional Construction Systems

Over the years we have used several construction systems that offer attractive benefits to traditional 2x wood frame construction.  These include: “Rastra”, “Perform-Wall”, “Grid Wall”, Rammed Earth, Concrete Block, Steel Frame, Straw Bale, Stress-Skin Foam Panels (SIPs), “Fas-Wall,” Adobe, Compressed Soil Blocks, “Hebel”, “LiteBlok”, Insulated Concrete Forms (ICF), Log Home Construction, Earth Sheltered, “EarthShip”, Solid Stone, Concrete Tilt Wall, Timber Frame, Steel Frame and, of course, our own High Performance Wood Frame system.

High Performance Green Design Concepts and Construction Components

In the 1970s, we introduced VENT SKIN construction, RADIANT BARRIERS, continuous RIDGE and SOFFIT VENTS, INTERNAL MASS and Venturi effect assisted THERMAL CHIMNEY ventilation, along with other advanced building science based architectural design, passive solar, microclimate design, and superior wood frame construction concepts to Texas.  In the early 1990s, we introduced the SEALED ENVELOPE CONCEPT in conjunction with improved HEALTHY INDOOR AIR QUALITY methods for wood framed homes.  Curiously, only recently has the home building industry and the media begun endorsing the energy efficient green building techniques and healthy home matters we began teaching Texans about in the mid 1970s.

Whether it’s your present home or a new home, we can help you lower your Living Cost.  We simply help you have a better home, through and through.  It will be wholistically designed or remodeled to be better built to whatever level green you want, be healthier to live in, and have better energy performance and durability.  Or we can just be your advisor for solutions for your present home, whether the issues are design, technical, or building science in nature.

 

WHAT WE CAN DO FOR YOU

  • Comprehensive Architectural Services for New Homes & Remodeling
  • Design Counseling and Technical Consulting at affordable hourly rates
  • Conceptual and Schematic Design plus Master Planning services
  • Design Services based upon Permaculture, LEED, Living Building Challenge, Bau-Biologie, Passivhaus, and more.
  • Complete or partial Construction Document services  (i.e., Plans & Specifications)
  • Construction Administration services
  • LEED for Homes services
  • Code approval services
  • Historic home recreations
  • Expert Witnessing
  • Workshops and Seminars
  • Resource base for technical information concerning the applicability and supply of unusual and advanced building systems and materials
  • Resource base for technical information on high quality, healthy “green” building materials, contractors, technicians and artisans
  • Building and Garden Site Selection services
  • Four Levels of Comprehensive Architectural Services, from pre-purchase site evaluations to construction process monitoring