I’m going to be honest with you, dear readers: your gbNYC blogger is hurting right now. My head feels like a 300-pound bag of goop and sadness, and honestly the thought of New York City real estate — like the thought of anything else — is really just a distraction from what I should be doing. Which is drinking tea, plotting revenge on allergens in general and pollen in particular, and blowing my nose. But, but: because I am all hustle and because I’m basking in the brief glow of a recently taken Duane Reade-brand Loratadine, I am bringing back Friday Reading, the link-intensive Friday blog post that gives you other people’s words instead of mine for your fill of weekend-beginning green stuff. Not the sort of green stuff people are allergic to. Never that. Never ever. So:
In Smart Money Magazine, Alyssa Abkowitz delivers a solid overview of the booming market for green prefab homes. We’ve covered this before, but Abkowitz’s article provides a nice tour of what’s going on in this burgeoning green sector:
For most people, the idea of factory-made homes conjures images of tacky, vinyl-sided shoeboxes on wheels. But boutique manufacturers like Blu and others are working to erase the lowbrow stigma with a new breed of prefabs that are hipper (hey, Brad Pitt’s nonprofit is building them in New Orleans!), more high-end (prices can run up to $3 million) and, above all, aggressively green.
And of course there’s One Bryant Park, the recently unveiled LEED Platinum office tower on, yes, Bryant Park. In the New York Observer, photographer Brian Letwin offers a photographic tour of the ultra-green giant. And in an opinion piece in the New York Times, Alec Appelbaum applauds One Bryant Park for its greenness while raising — for admittedly the umpteenth time — concerns about just what it means to be LEED Platinum:
While the standard is well-intentioned, it is also greatly misunderstood. Put simply, a building’s LEED rating is more like a snapshot taken at its opening, not a promise of performance. Unless local, state and federal agencies do their part to ensure long-term compliance with the program’s ideals, it could end up putting a shiny green stamp on a generation of unsustainable buildings.
And that’s that for now. I’ll see you next week, at which point I will either feel better or be working with Stephen on a massive lawsuit against the inventors of Loratadine.