Since 2002, Michelle Kaufmann Designs and mkStudios, have been at the forefront of green and sustainable prefabricated house designs on the West Coast. Founded by it’s namesake, Michelle Kaufmann, it’s guiding principle is to provide a full service design/build architectural firm that uses off-site modular technology and prepackaged green solutions as the means to create beautiful, eco-friendly homes and multi-family developments.
Both companies strive to show how Michelle’s five EcoPrinciples can be easily and elegantly incorporated into nearly everyone’s daily life. These EcoPrinciples are:
- Smart design
- Ecological materials
- Energy efficiency
- Water conservation
- Healthy environment
These principles can be seen in their various “products”:
The Glidehouse® meets the Energy Star® program standards for energy efficient homes and meets the performance standards of the American Lung Association Health House program. Each Glidehouse is solar ready for even more green living.
This high performance home is insulated with an air-barrier, open cell foam insulation, and all wood-to-wood framing joints are caulked, which makes the home airtight, energy efficient, and less likely to produce mold.
First built in 2007, the mkLotus® is a zero energy home. It features a green roof, solar powered, and other green and sustainable features. This prefabricated home was designed to be a peaceful oasis that collaborates with the land. This home offers the latest high-performance systems and sustainable materials and methods, which dramatically reduces its impact on the environment, as well as your energy bills!
The first mkLotus was built in 2007 as part of the West Coast Green conference in San Francisco. This conference brings together hundreds of experts and visionaries in the field of sustainable design. The mkLotus was situated prominently in front of San Francisco’s City Hall, and during its stay there, the mkLotus received thousands of visitors.
They can do this by specializing in off-site construction techniques and build these new homes in a factory, reducing the amount of construction waste by 50% to 75% and speed up the actual assembly of the home on the site.
The new modular home is constructed using three-dimensional boxes or “modules”. The home is built to site-built code, but created in a factory. Interior and exterior sheathing, utility lines, interior partitions and stairs are all completed in the factory. The modules are 90-95% complete when they come off the assembly line in the factory.
After completion in the factory, a modular home is shipped to the site, then attached to a permanent foundation at the building site. Several modules can be connected side-by-side or stacked to create a finished home. When completed, modular homes are composed of several modules fastened together.
This is a very green way to build a new home.