Thursday, February 26, 2009

2nd BiWeekly Post - New Orleans MIR

This weekend I went to New Orleans for Mardi Gras with Sarah and her coworker Kaile. We drove up and stayed with a friend of a friend and it turned out really great. As soon as we got there we dropped our stuff off and hit up a parade right near Tulane University. Not exactly the most eco-friendly of a holiday. The place gets trashed and beads are literally everywhere. But its a good to relax about that stuff once in a while I guess.

The next day we decided to go west of Tulane and New Orleans to check out the above ground tombs. Here is a shot of Kaile next to some of the Tombs.

Just randomly after breakfast we happen to be stumble upon a really interesting looking house. It was so interesting and we had taken a wrong turn to get there so we got out to check it out. After further inspection I saw it had Solar Panels, Solar Hot Water Heaters, and Rainwater Harvesting... this was not just a normal house. (Its pictured below)

So after some encouragement from Sarah, I went up to the front door (I mean what I figured was the front door... it wasn't that clear) and hoped for the best. What we got was beyond the best. The man inside was the Architect of the building (his home) and his company (Conchordia) had designed 2 of the house designs for Brad Pitt's Make It Right Project we were about to go see! So he took us around the house and showed us all the wonderful ways he had made his house more sustainable. He designed his house to be a lab, where he could see which techonologies worked and which did not. The house was LEED Gold I believe.

After we thanked Steven for showing us his lovely house we headed to the 9th ward to check out The Make it Right Project.

The place was totally devistated, there was nothing on this flat piece of land except 6 or so new houses from the MIR project. There was a group of people hanging outside this house below.
They were very nice and actually offered to show us around the house. Gloria, I believe was her name, was given the very first house in the 9th ward and she was able to tell the Architect exactly what she wanted (where as everyone else has to pick from the 13 eco-designs). On the inside the house was pretty normal, but there were a lot of bedrooms and people living in this house. They gave us home cooked Ribs and told us to stay but we were ready to move on and felt they had been kind enough (I tried ribs... 2 bites).

The trip was really great and I am really interested in going back to the 9th ward a year or so from now to see the progress that they have made. They are suppose to build 150 houses and they have funding for 90ish houses so far. Don't forget to check out the website for MIR and more of my pictures on facebook.


No comments: