Thursday, April 10, 2008
As anyone who has recently sat near an open window can tell you, New York city is abuzz with construction. Everywhere you look cranes are hoisting materials and cement mixers are laying foundations.
Aside from the noise, this is a very good thing.
Because "green" is so hot right now, builders and designers are really outdoing themselves trying to create healthy and sustainable living space. Everywhere you look, it seems a new LEED certified condo or office building is shooting up.
This is a good thing because the trickle down effect means that soon we'll all get to live green.
Celebrities and tastemakers now demand to live green, that means that their former digs will empty out, and new groups of people will be able to live in the non-green luxury spaces. Those people will have vacated their own nice spaces which leaves room for a wave of owners and renters that otherwise would have been unable to afford such fine living, because if a space isn't sustainable, it will be cheaper.
This trickle-down/move-up effect will ripple through the NY housing market as celebrities flee their current apartments for greener pastures.
There's nothing wrong with living non-sustainably, as long as you're aware of the fact and seeking to change and improve it. We've lived non-sustainably for years, and will continue to live that way for a while.
In a few years, when material science has introduced entire new methods of construction using lighter and stronger materials than anything we've got today, everyone gets to "move-up" again.
If this years' Green Skyscraper is carbon neutral, has en-suite parking, passive solar heating and cooling, and central composting/recycling centers, then next years will be carbon-negative (producing power, not just using it up,) have composting toilets, living roofs and walls, combo piezo-electric/solar skin, and a personal helipad.
The sky's the limit.
But we all win.
Everyone gets to live sustainably.
Go New York!