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Contact the following about the Fraser Net-zero Energy House: Bryan Bowen Architects:,303.443.3629; Sandi Gibson, outside L.A., LLC:, 303.517.9256; and Colorado Green Roofs and Walls: 970.223.4769.

This custom net-zero energy residence was designed with the living spaces on the second floor in order to take advantage of the great mountain views. This allowed us to design a large living roof/deck over the garage space below. Recognizing the beautiful, but extremely harsh environment, this year round residence applies a host of passive and active building technologies with real time monitoring devices to ensure an inviting and inspiring home. With a 17 kilowatt PV system and an evacuated tube solar thermal array, the 5,232 square foot home is grid-tied and all electric, powering two all electric, plug-in vehicles, while using no fossil fuels. In addition to the main living spaces, the home includes a guest house wing and home gym, which can be shut down when not in use.

The design for the home was put through extensive energy modeling to guide the design of the building. As a result of the home is extremely energy efficient with a HERS (Home Energy Rating System) score of -22. For reference, a typical home built to building code is a HERS 100; a home built to Energy-Star requirements is a HERS 85.

The house is situated on a relatively flat site, in a valley of the Rocky Mountain Range, elevation 8500?. A site forested with pine and aspen trees, the landscape design intent was to keep the re-vegetation native and natural. The green roof allowed us to introduce drought tolerant grasses, sedums, and colorful wildflowers, while protecting the plants from local wildlife and extreme wind.

Fraser is known as the ?ice box of the Rockies?. With nightly temperatures above freezing only 30 days of the year, it was imperative that extensive energy modeling be performed to ensure the building performed as desired. This also meant a very short growing season and the need for hardy, drought tolerant plants in order to survive this harsh and dry environment. Amongst the windswept rocks and trees, this warm and inviting home is truly built to stand the test of time.

Sandi Gibson, landscape architect, worked directly with Colorado Green Roofs & Walls to select the plant mix suitable for this climate. The homeowners preferred low maintenance plants and some color. The design includes Live Roof trays set low amongst Bison Ipe wood pavers & Stepstone concrete pavers. We also designed a section of the roof to include raised planters with deeper soil (12?-14?) for a mix of ornamental grasses and native perennial flowers.

The Live Roof trays were installed over a sand bed, to allow the contractor ease in leveling the trays and aligning the top of the tray with the adjacent pavers. Both the raised planters and Live Roof trays were then installed over waterproof membrane roof with tapered insulation to provide drainage. We also edged the transition of the Live Roof trays with GeoEdge. The contractor followed the installation and used the typical waterproofing details provided by Live Roof.


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