Mother Earth Living

Greensburg to Begin Construction of the Silo Eco-Home

This green home will be the first in a series of eco-homes for eco-tourism in Greensburg, Kansas.
By Olivia Blanco Mullins
December 2008 Web
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Rendering of the 2005 solar decathlon winner. This green home was donated to Greensburg and will be part of its Eco-Homes project.
Courtesy of the University of Colorado, Boulder

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Builders will break ground on Greensburg’s Silo Eco-Home on Thursday. This begins the Eco-Homes Project, an eco-tourism initiative in the Kansas town that was wiped out by a tornado in May 2007.

Greensburg Greentown , the organization that owns and has been leading the green construction of the home, plans to complete the project in May 2009, in time for the two-year anniversary of the tornado.

The Silo Eco-Home uses methods and materials that traditional silos use. It will have concrete walls and a cylindrical shape, which gives it strength to support very intense winds, up to 200 mph, according to Greensburg Greentown

In addition, the Silo Eco-Home will have a passive ventilation system, as well as a vegetable garden on the roof, solar-powered electricity and water-saving features. Ogden Publications , publisher of Natural Home magazine, is one of the anchor sponsors for the home.

The Silo Eco-Home is the first of 12 eco-tourism homes to be built in Greensburg; it will serve as a museum during the day and tourist lodging at night, where travelers can experience living in a green home. The Eco-Homes Project will also include a straw-bale home as well as the winner of the 2005 Solar Decathlon , built by a University of Colorado, Boulder team . This home was donated to Greensburg for the Eco-Homes Project.

Since the tornado on May 4, 2007, Greensburg has tried to reconstruct the rural Kansas town in a more eco-friendly manner. Greensburg Greentown expects to receive tourists from around the world to see and experience life in a green town. 

More about green building

• Check out Greenburg's progress as of May 2009!

• See how far we've come in green building since 1999.

• Have Boulder, Colorado, BuildSmart standards been taken too far? See why home builders are complaining.

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