The words “New Orleans” conjure up some specific flavors, sights and sounds: gumbo, po’boys, jazz, shotgun houses. At the moment, a visionary arts organization, New Orleans Airlift, is working to bring together the worlds of music, architecture and art in a new and creative way. Dubbed Dithyrambalina, the undertaking, the brainchild of artists Swoon, Delaney Martin, Taylor Lee Shepherd and Jay Pennington, is engaging fellow artists, musicians and inventors to create a village of musical, playable houses.
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In a world where nearly 200 million people worldwide live in high risk coastal flooding zones, new design solutions are needed for homes that adapt to this reality. The FLOAT House, created by the Morphosis Team in collaboration with the UCLA Department of Architecture and Urban Design, is precisely this kind of design. This residential home in New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward can withstand a storm the size of Hurricane Katrina; it sustains its own water and power needs; and it is manufactured cheaply enough to function as low-income housing.
A round of finalists has been selected from the first phase of the Natural Talent Design Competition, hosted by the the Salvation Army and the U.S. Green Building Council. A total of 49 designs were chosen as local finalists from 27 of USGBC's chapters. These 49 projects will now be assessed by the national jury, and winners will be announced on Monday, August 30. Entrants were invited to design an affordable, 800 square foot green home for an elderly client in the Broadmoor, New Orleans neighborhood.
The USGBC's 2010 Natural Design Competition is focused on the rebuilding effort in New Orleans. Up to four designs will be selected from the local competition finalists to be showcased at Greenbuild 2010 Expo and, for the first time, the designers will see their projects built in the Broadmoor neighborhood. Once the homes are built, they will enter a measurement and verification phase in which they will be graded on energy efficiency, water reuse, and indoor air quality among other categories. The design team whose home performs best during measurement and verification will be awarded the final grand prize in 2011.
Click here to see the entire list of finalists.