We are trained and PHIUS certified in using the most progressive and cost effective metrics available relative to designing high efficiency homes, buildings or communities. For example, buildings designed according to the Passive House Institute typically require 70% to 80% less energy to operate than does a typical code conforming building. The globally recognized Passive House standard, endorsed by DOE, represents the highest standard of energy efficiency available today and is applicable to all building types (not just houses). You can look at a map showing Passive House projects in North America. Just as importantly, buildings designed to this standard are much more healthy and comfortable to live in since bad air is exhausted and only filtered fresh air is allowed to enter through the air-tight building envelope.
At Solera Studios, we take care to provide our clients high quality architectural services for their unique needs. We are professional, cost conscious, courteous and efficient (and fun to work with). And we will be happy to provide references for you.
Permaculture (permanent culture) is the conscious design of agriculturally productive ecosystems by working with, rather than against, nature. This design philosophy, and a sense of personal responsibility for earth care, pervade all of the activities of Solera Studios whether limited to basic siting considerations for locating a building in its environment or providing for an edible forest garden to serve an intentional community or pocket neighborhood. Per the following link you can watch a short video about how "together, we can save our planet": http://www.vimeo.com/140434969
Building Information Modeling (BIM)
We use what is arguably the most advanced BIM software available today: ArchiCAD. Our clients enjoy the invaluable benefit of 3D visualization of their project via the use of ArchiCAD's BIMx software which is very easy (and fun) to use. Additionally, the use if BIM ensures that the graphic documents required by the client with be coordinated with each other resulting in expedited construction and reduced costs.