Columbia County’s Porte-Cottom House Wins Best in Green Building Competition

This Energy Star-rated home is one of the best performing in the Hudson Valley: its energy bills last year were less than $35.

New York House magazine’s first annual Best in Green Building Competition has been ongoing here in 2008 in no small part due to the efforts of gbNYC’s Paul McGinniss, who also served on the panel of judges that whittled the competition’s entries down to 12 back in September. To be eligible, homes had to be single-family and located in one of the magazine’s upstate editorial coverage areas (Westchester, Rockland, Putnam, etc. counties) and built between 2000 and 2006. The purpose of the competition? Simply to identify “exemplary” green residential projects and promote sustainable design. The judges used criteria from the USGBC’s LEED for Homes system during their review, but a LEED application was not a prerequisite in order to qualify.

According to the judges- including McGinniss- energy efficiency emerged as the most important criterion, and the winning home- the 1600-square-foot Porte-Cottom House in Canaan (Columbia County, just southeast of Albany) owns an Energy Star label. The judges called the house, which was completed in July of 2006, “modest and practical” and were impressed with its solar orientation, extensive insulation, and propane-powered appliances; owner Trina Porte (who also served as the project’s general contractor) tells NYH that last year’s electric bills were a paltry $31. Congratulations to Paul and New York House for organizing a great competition; check out a link to a digital version of the article revealing all of the winners below.

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