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Congresswoman Nydia Velazquez, Council Member Carlos Menchaca, our #RedHook Local Leaders and more at NYCHA #Sandy update meeting last night. #NYC #NonProfit
Ever found this randomly growing in your yard or garden? Its called Purslane and can actually benefit you more by keeping it then throwing it out. For more details about it, check it out on our Facebook page (Link is in our Bio)
Over 20 red hook local leaders turn out at NYCHA Sandy update meeting with question prepared on rebuilding.
Developing conservation blueprints is more than just protecting lands and water. It's about saving natural and cultural heritage for the next generation and generations to come.
To continue showcasing our awesome members, we’re welcoming Solano Open Space to the stage as another featured guest for this week’s #OSCQuizFridays! We’ll be asking about their past nomenclature, AKAs, and aliases. Join us on Twitter @BA_OpenSpace this Friday from 11:30a-1:30p to test your knowledge of the #BayArea’s finest land conservation organizations!
Welcome to the first week of #OSCQuizFridays! Here at the Open Space Council we are so grateful and inspired by our members and supporters and the work they do every day in the #BayArea. With that in mind we are starting a weekly game to highlight interesting facts and stories about our members and supporters. Stay tuned for how you can participate!
Office chairs are empty, our crew is in route to Chicago! See everyone soon.. @navypierchicago Beat the lines and purchase tickets from our website!

Dumpster Diving Goldmine

Eco Brooklyn does a lot of dumpster diving. Most of the materials we use for jobs – floors, decks, pergolas, paving, stairs – comes from dumpsters in the New York area. One reporter called it “guerrilla green building.”

Salvaged Beams from Dumpster

 

The wood from the image above was turned into the [...]

Best Urban Space Remodels: Our Instagram Claim to Fame

In the spirit of awards season, we’re pleased to announce that our green building Instagram account has been awarded an Instagrammy! Improvement Center evaluated the top ten home contractors to follow and we’ve been recognized for having the best urban space remodels.

Our feed features images from our Manhattan and Brooklyn ecological construction projects including [...]

Upcycled Shipping Container: Windows

Sustainable architecture and passive building designs are swiftly increasing in popularity and as a NY green contractor we have been busy developing creative and sustainable structures in Brooklyn, NY. Our current project is a two story studio and office space built from 5 recycled shipping containers. A more comprehensive post will be added regarding the [...]

Salvaged Douglas Fir Deck

 

Eco Brooklyn’s latest project was developed for our client in Williamsburg. The client was looking to renovate their distressed backyard and create a beautiful space to sit and relax. We first develop a design and render it for the clients approval. This deck is perfect for small gatherings, allows access to the yard, [...]

Klearwall Windows and Doors

Eco Brooklyn was visited today by Klearwall Industries. Klearwall is a certified Passive House windows company. Originally based in Ireland, Klearwall is looking to make its mark in the US market. They offer triple-paned windows and doors for domestic and commercial needs, ranging from single-window installation to entire buildings. Their windows are billed as eco-clad, [...]

Crown Heights Project – 100% Salvaged Material Fence

Eco Brooklyn has been working on an interesting sustainable project in the Crown Heights area. The challenge is to build a fence using only salvaged material.

How does this project work?

Our green building team collects extraneous wood from the local company, U.S. Fencing Systems, Inc. The staff there are extremely gracious and are happy [...]

Green Building is not a product

A reporter just interviewed me on green building. I thought I’d share it here since the reporter has a pretty common viewpoint, one I believe is not correct.

What aspects home remodeling/room design are the most popular “green” solutions? Most clients know they want to renovate green but usually don’t know exactly what the details [...]

Alternative solutions to lead contamination

Brooklyn prides itself in its historic buildings, but these same sites pose an often unknown toxicity risk to inhabitants. Although the use of lead products was outlawed decades ago – lead-based paints were taken off the market in 1978 and leaded gasoline was banned in 1989 – lead’s legacy continues to taint Brooklyn’ s soils. [...]

Phone Booth Aquarium

When was the last time you used a pay phone? For me, I think it was when I was in High School in the early 90s when I was stranded downtown. But since everyone, and I mean everyone, has a mobile phone now, pay phones are obsolete. In a way, I am saddened by the [...]

Fun Built with Salvaged Material

The growth in sustainable and green living has given rise to a movement of eco-tourism in a variety of forms across the country. Specifically the use of salvaged materials is making a breakthrough in the realm of practical and/ or novel green construction.

Across the country salvaged building trends and communities are blossoming and their [...]

Sustainable Wood

Last Tuesday the EcoBrooklyn interns attended the dasHAUS symposium and tour in White Plains, New York. The touring exhibition features the mobile dasHAUS pavilion, constructed of fully functioning sustainable energy technologies. The pavilion’s design is inspired by the Technical University of Darmstadt’s winning Solar Decathlon entries in 2007 and 2009. The tour, organized by the [...]

DIY Vertical Gardens

Vertical gardens or living walls are a beautiful and efficient way to maximize green space within an urban context. Aesthetically, vertical gardens can be used to improve the façade of buildings while providing other ecosystem services such as enhanced air quality.

Perhaps first employed by the Mesopotamians to create the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, the [...]

Demolished Buildings Get a Second Life as Contemporary Furniture

12×12 is the maximum dimensions a shelter in North Carolina can be before it legally becomes a house, subject to property taxes. For this reason it is a hallowed number among the off-the-grid set, and the title of a popular book on one man’s foray into the world of tiny houses.

This stockbar by [...]

Salvaged Floor Tung Oil Application

For the past several jobs we have used salvaged mahogany flooring. We salvaged 15,000 square feet of it a while back. It is very pretty stuff. Here we are applying the tung oil to it.

We are applying two types of oil, simply because that is what we have left over from the previous [...]

CORK IS STILL GREEN

In the last year or so cork has attracted more media attention than in the last 2,500 years of use. Beginning with the Egyptians, cork has been used as a stopper for vessels containing perishables like wine,

water, and olive oil. Since then the use of cork has expanded to use in flooring tiles, shoes, [...]

Reverse Environmental Building Footprint Via Salvage

Here are some interesting numbers from the Binational Softwood Lumber Council (BSLC) on the environmental footprint of building three similar homes from three three different materials – wood, metal and concrete. I’m sure you can guess what their numbers show: that wood is the greenest option.

I don’t know whether their numbers are based in [...]

New York Contractor Builds Passive House out of Salvaged Materials

Here is a short video we threw together of the Passive House renovation in Harlem. The video mostly discusses the budgeting of the project.

Now that the construction is for the most part done I think that our initial budget of $175/sq.ft is not sustainable. Of course it is great for the client in the [...]

Material Reuse with the NYCMEDP

Eco Brooklyn has partnered up with the NYC Materials Exchange Development Program, a great non-profit that keeps reusable materials out of the trash by connecting people with unwanted materials to others who can reuse them.

The NYCMEDP runs a number of ongoing service, outreach, and research programs. The NYC Waste Match, for example, is a [...]

Salvaging Materials at EcoBrooklyn

Gennaro Brooks-Church, Director of EcoBrooklyn Inc, discusses the significant element of salvaging materials for use in the company’s green renovations. Currently we are wrapping up a full-renovation of a brownstone in Manhattan where we’ve been working hard to attain its stringent Passive House requirements.

Check out our video below, and feel free to leave us [...]

Bringing Passivhaus to Harlem

Check out this great article about our Eco Brooklyn’s Passive House in Harlem. GreenBuildingAdvisor.com, a great online source for building, designing, and remolding green homes, sent Richard Defendorf to our Harlem site to check out our work. Read his write-up of all the techniques we used to seal our passive house!

http://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/blogs/dept/green-building-news/bringing-passivhaus-harlem

[...]

Zero Brownstone Technique and Salvaged Materials

EcoBrooklyn Director Gennaro Brooks-Church, talks about the importance of salvaged materials which are crucial in helping achieve the company’s goal of zero or negative waste created and zero or negative new materials used. This is one of the main things that separates Eco Brooklyn from an ordinary NY contractor – finding floor joists, wood flooring, [...]

Salvaged Crystal Stone

Eco Brooklyn’s business model is to salvage as much as possible. We believe this is the true definition of a NY green contractor in a city with such abundant and high quality trash. We recently salvaged what we thought was marble. We cut it down to make all the bathroom and kitchen counters for the [...]

It Should Be a Crime!

A typical thing happened today in the life of Eco Brooklyn. One of our workers noticed a dumpster full of wood and called it in to the office. I dispatched our “Rescue Truck”, Eco Brooklyn’s veggie oil pickup, to go salvage the wood before it was carted off to the dump.

This wood has sat [...]

New York Salvaged Flooring

Here is a photo essay of how we salvaged some flooring and reused it. We bought 15,000 square feet of herring bone style mahogany flooring from an office building.

The flooring didn’t look too fancy laying in a big pile:

They had glued it down previously.

We then cut it to make [...]

New York Eco Deck Installation

We went by to check on a deck we built in Manhattan last year. It looks good! It was raining which made the deck glisten more.

We made it out of salvaged Douglass fir joists from an old building. We sanded them down and oiled them up with natural oils.

Check it out:

[...]

New York Green Roof Installation

We just wrapped up a green roof job in East New York. Here is a photo essay from start to finish. We planted late in the year and the nights were already freezing. But we trusted the hardiness of sedum and so far they have shown to be very happy on the new roof.

[...]

Green From The Ground Up – Book

The book Green from the Ground Up, Sustainable, Healthy, and Energy-Efficient Home Construction, offers everything its title promises, and yet that very same title shows how wrong the authors are. It is 330 pages full of intelligent “green” building techniques covering everything from efficient insulation techniques to natural ventilation.

The book is a fantastic overview [...]

Brooklyn Wood Floor Revival

We did two jobs over the past week on wood floors. They started out really ugly. And they ended up amazing. We finished them with 100% pure tung oil so they are really natural.

The first job was to remove some paint that a previous owner, in their infinite and unfathomable intelligence, had painted over [...]

Salvaged Wood Synergy

Here is a cool example of creative salvaging. They have taken planks from an old brownstone roof and flipped them upside down as a ceiling.

The one consideration is fire. This was done in a restaurant, which means it shares the ceiling with an apartment upstairs, which means the ceiling has to be 2 [...]

Rebuildersource.coop

I just go a call from Joel Frank, one of the three members of the Rebuilder Source cooperative in the Bronx. They accept donations of building materials and resell them at good prices. The drive behind them is mostly idealistic: one of making the world a greener place by reusing materials.

He was just reaching [...]