The McKinley residence, home to David Hertz and his family, was designed in two phases. The first phase featured two separate volumes connected by a bridge. Years later, the adjacent lot became available. It is now a compound made up of four discrete two-story buildings linked by three enclosed bridges that all face onto the courtyard, in a style one might call "Balinese Modern."
David Hertz's goal was to make the house the greenest house of its size he'd ever seen. Hertz used this house as a case study for green building techniques. The materials used were chosen carefully to support environmental sustainability and the design intent. Recycled and FSC certified sustainable woods such as Ipe, Mahogany, and Fir, are used throughout the house. Much of the concrete is Syndecrete®, which contains about 41 percent recycled content and is twice as light, with twice the compressive strength, of regular concrete. The material acts inside the house as a kind of "solar sink" for passive solar energy transfer, storing up the sun's warmth during the day, and keeping it from overheating the interior, and slowly releasing that heat during the night. Syndecrete® flooring was chosen because it eliminates mold and dust caused by carpet, requires less maintenance, and is more environmentally sensitive than other floor finishes. David used zero VOC paint to maintain excellent indoor air quality and eliminate a forced-air system and carpeted floors, progenitors of mold and dust. 20 solar panels on the roof help generate about 70 percent of the home's electricity needs. Other sections of the roof are given over to flat-plate collectors that provide hot water to the water heater, which then sends it into a radiant heating system in the concrete floors. This building is a successful study in architecture that is aesthetically pleasing and environmentally responsible. The house was rewarded the Sustainable Living Award by the Eco Home network.
-Solar Energy – an array of 20 Photovoltaic solar panels on the roof supply around 70% of the home's energy needs
-Evacuated Tube Collectors and Flat Plate Collectors – providing domestic hot water to the water heater and pool solar hot water
-Vacuum tubing on the roof, which uses a parabolic collector to focus the sun's rays, provides additional hot water
-Recycled FSC certified sustainable woods such as Ipe, Mahogany, and Fir
-Much of the concrete is Syndecrete®, a light-weight concrete that uses
-41% recycled content
-Zero VOC paints
-High-performance heat-mirror glazing and abundant natural lighting
-The pool system uses ionization and silver, copper, and Platinum oxidizer, eliminating the need for chlorine
-Solar Hydronic radiant system and programmable thermostatic controls and in-floor and exterior sensors
-State of the Art whole house lighting and lighting controls
-Thermostatically controlled automatic skylights and windows
-Whole-house ventilation systems
-Passive Ventilation – eliminating the need for a forced-air system