An Eco Minded Home Coming to the Gulfview Heights Neighborhood


Southeast Perspective

Southeast Perspective

On the drawing board – a three story private residence in Gulfview Heights with lots of character and eco-minded features.

Here are some of the highlights:

  • Hydronic radiant floor heating
  • ICF (Insulated Concrete Forms) construction
  • Net-metered PV (photovoltaic) system
  • Charging stations for electric cars
  • South facing covered porches
  • Lightning protection
  • Outdoor kitchen

That’s just a sneak peek. Hopefully, you’ll be seeing more of this project when construction starts rolling.

Now, how about those sketches? Not bad for right out of the box ArchiCAD pre-sets. Oh, how far we’ve come. I made a HUGE shift this past year; I ditched the beloved (or bemoaned, depending on one’s perspective) industry standard drafting software – the behemeth – AutoCAD. Gasp, I know! The truth is, there are so many other great programs out there. Unfortunately, we sometimes get hitched up with one that is hard to break away from due to cost, previous time invested, learning curve, existing infrastructure, compatibility, etc.

I learned on AutoCAD, starting with version 10 in 1994. AutoCAD was already on to other versions, though my school was just beginning to offer Computer Aided Design classes in their new cutting-edge CAD department. There was no Windows or WYSIWYG interface. We learned AutoLISP code and how to write scripts in ASCII (in DOS!!) that would command AutoCAD to do things like draw a line by just typing “L”. One had to be a programmer just to draw a circle on the screen. We also saved everything on 5 1/4″ floppies. I still have some of those. That’s weird, right?

AutoCAD made incredible strides over the years and I did my best to keep up, even learning some basic 3D modeling with Architectural Desktop. I’m not a quitter mind you. I like to think I have a bit of pioneering spirit lurking inside. I simply got bored and found that being busy cranking out construction documents didn’t leave much time to cultivate a real desire to learn how to model and render better with my software. So, why the big switch?

You asked for it. Everyone wants to see a pretty picture. I got the message. We can’t stay mired in the past and think that our good looks are going to carry us forever. It was time to try new things in a bold and dramatic way. All this was to say, “Hey, check out these cool renderings that I created in ArchiCAD right from my construction drawings.” It’s even cooler knowing that these are dynamic and will change if the construction documents change – love that!

More renderings coming soon. I’ve got a sweet cottage coming together in Pt. Washington. In the meantime, here’s the rear view of the house above.

Live well!

Northwest 1

Northwest Perspective


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