SmartDwelling I - Sideyard Sail

   SmartDwelling I, published recently by the Wall Street Journal in their Green House of the Future article has a number of innovations that aren’t so much inventions as they are re-purposing things we’ve known about for a very long time. Green Walls are one such pattern; the Laundry Eave is another.

   SmartDwelling I was designed for the Gulf Coast, where there is a nautical heritage, as the early towns and cities were all built with a direct dependence on commerce across the Gulf. So when I started looking for a way to catch breezes coming down the street and redirect a portion of the breeze through the sideyard, a sail was an obvious choice.

   The Sideyard Sail can be furled in a storm, of course, in order to protect the sail cloth... and also to avoid sending high storm winds through your side yard. It works by pivoting a boom out over the frontage garden. If there is no frontage garden, then the front garden wall should be made tall enough (this one is) so that the boom is above head height. But that’s OK... that simply assures a private side garden.

   Incidentally, the original Sideyard Sail was envisioned for Schooner Bay, a wonderful new town in the Bahamas, on the eastern shore of Abaco. It will be a working fishing village. It has organic farms on its western border, so that you can look out over the fields and over the waters from which much of your food comes. Because of this, Schooner Bay will be one of the first new Nourishable Places to be built in recent times. Schooner Bay will also build upon all other foundations of the Original Green, making it one of the first Original Green places to be built in our time.

   The first Original Green place to be designed was Sky, located in the Florida panhandle. It is now in the development approvals process, and should be under construction shortly. Sky is a veritable laboratory of Original Green ideas, breaking new ground in too many ways to count. See the Sky Method (it’s a big file; give it a few to download) for a highly organic and sequential land development method invented for Sky. It promises to bypass the normal development brain damage of millions of dollars of infrastructure investment up front before you can sell a single lot... brain damage that is actually almost impossible since the Meltdown, because banks have basically quit loaning money for new development.


~ Steve Mouzon


© The Guild Foundation 2013