Backstory. David Gottfried is the founder of the U.S. Green Building Council, and so when his family bought the long-neglected 1915 bungalow, they were determined to make it as green as green could be. Their decision to move in the first place was inspired by a desire to reduce their footprint; they went from a 2,600 square foot house high up in the hills to 1,500 square feet in a walkable neighborhood near a BART station. To eliminate his commute entirely, Gottfried built a home office, a LifePod shed in the yard powered by solar, and heated by the sun as well through an all-glass wall.
Green Details. All of the paints used in the bungalow's renovation were zero-VOC paints by Mythic. Celluose insulation, recycled from newsprint, was blown into the existing walls through small holes drilled in the wood paneling. A gray water recycling system nourishes the native plantings in the yard, and also provides water to the house's toilets. Solar panels bring the family's electric bill down to net zero by feeding energy back into the grid on sunny days. And for the bungalow's exterior stairs, which needed to be replaced, the family chose wood from a century-old bridge in Sacramento.
Photos: Matthew Millman for Metropolitan Home