A city looks for big solutions in little – very little – houses

On Saturday, Mayor Tom Bates will cut the ribbon on a new home on Delaware Street in Berkeley. It’s not every day a city leader takes the time to welcome a new dwelling into his fold, and this home is not big, nor particularly special; in fact it’s positively diminutive at just 420 sq ft, and can rightfully be described as a backyard cottage. So one might wonder why it warrants an “opening party” with dignitaries in attendance, sponsors — even a salsa band.

Continue to full article: http://www.berkeleyside.com/2011/01/07/a-city-looks-for-big-solutions-in-a-little-very-little-house/

Clinton Global Initiative

When Kevin Casey proposed the idea of constructing homes which emit no carbon dioxide to a Design for Sustainable Communities course at University of California Berkeley, an impressive team of engineering and urban planning graduate students signed on to test the idea. After testing the business plan for financing and building second units, the team found that there were both regulatory and technological changes that made this a viable and meaningful business. After the class Casey had a well tested and research business plan, but no clients, no capital to push the idea forward. That’s where CGI U came in.

Continue to full article: http://www.cgiu.org/commitments/featured_commitments/Net_Zero_Homes.asp

Greenbelt Alliance

Just one month after Greenbelt Alliance endorsed New Avenue, Inc.’s model for creating sustainable in-law homes, the company is nearing completion of its first in-law suite in Berkeley.

New Avenue uses an innovative development model that weaves small cottages and in-law suites into existing backyards throughout our communities. This vision for development aligns with our Grow Smart Bay Area goals, which calls a for 5% increase of in-law units in appropriate Bay Area neighborhoods.

Continue to full article: http://growsmartbayarea.org/gs_news/2010/10/a-new-avenue-for-development/