jackie o neil zero energy prototype homes
Location: Perkiomenville, PA
Owner/Developer: Jackie O’Neil
Building type: Single-family residential
New construction, 2 houses
Size: 2016 sq ft and 2216 sq ft
LEED for Homes Gold certified
Two energy efficient, passive/active solar single family residences, integrated climate responsive design, energy modeling, daylighting, radon resistant construction, slab on grade, structural insulated panels, fiber cement siding, 50 yr shingle roof, clad wood ENERGY STAR windows, stained concrete floors, no-VOC finishes, site-harvested wood floors & millwork, salvaged interior doors, geothermal heating system & radiant floor heat, tankless on-demand water heating, energy recovery ventilation & humidity control, passive cooling & geothermal air conditioning, 5.25 kW grid connected photovoltaic system, ENERGY STAR appliances & lighting, high efficiency water saving plumbing fixtures, native landscaping, permeable pavement, rainwater harvesting, non-toxic pest control.
In October 2004, homeowner & visionary developer Jackie O'Neil began the process of creating a prototype “zero energy” home [one] that would eliminate fossil fuel use, reduce water consumption, and have healthy air quality—without sacrificing aesthetics or affordability. “I wanted to show people that a green home doesn’t have to cost more, that it is feasible, and that it can be beautiful”. She also wanted to provide a prototype example of green, zero energy homebuilding in the Philadelphia market that would pave the way for future climate responsive development in the region.
A 2MW municipal solar power plant requires about 10 acres of land to serve a city of 1,000 homes — that’s acreage generally easily available at the outskirts of any city of such size in even the most developed countries. With a solar power plant in each of several hundred cities, a Gigawatt of power is delivered locally to where it is needed, in a digestible size.
In a municipal solar power plant, solar panels are mounted onto rails above the ground so that grass and flowers can continue to flourish in between and below the rows of panels. Care is taken that sufficient amounts of rainwater can drop through between adjoining panels so that the flowers and organisms below are not starved. In fact, in dry regions, the solar panels even benefit the ecosystem by increasing the moisture level in the soil..
"Sparky" The VOLTS Wagen
Through scrupulous application of science and technology man can continue
to divest of murderous barbarity and improve conditions.