New Caney ISD Students Building Super-Modern Home

Posted in the East Montgomery County Observer on 09-27-2013. The original article can be found here.

The Piney Woods United States Green Building Council (USGBC) Branch of Montgomery County has entered into a partnership with New Caney ISD to build a “green” demonstration home from used shipping containers. It will be the first of its kind built in the country.

When completed, the fully functioning demonstration home will showcase to the public the most energy efficient, affordable home features available, including energy efficiency, recycling, water management, and use of readily available green products.

The layout includes two bedrooms, a bathroom, kitchen, and a family room with closets for storage. Constructed of two 40-foot cube shipping containers no longer suited for shipping cargo, the demonstration home will be designed to function totally “off the grid,” meaning that it will not rely on public utility services for power or water.

New Caney ISD has a notableCareer and Technical Education (CTE) program. The Building Trades and Welding Technology CTE programs will be involved in the project.

Students in these programs will have the opportunity to improve their skills in carpentry and welding while working on the home. The Piney Woods USGBC Branch will pay for the project materials. The labor to construct the container home will be provided by the students, with branch members serving as mentors.

“We are excited about the opportunity to provide a real world project that will give the students hands-on experience,” said Gary Yancey, Director of Career & Technical Education of New Caney ISD.

He noted that the project would offer students an opportunity to apply the skills learned in the classroom.

The Piney Woods USGBC branch will seek LEED for Homes certification for the project. Upon completion, the building is planned to serve as the office for the Piney Woods Branch in Montgomery County, and be open to the general public.

The Piney Woods USGBC Branch members consist of engineers, architects, builders, indoor air-quality specialist, landscapers, builders, and retired veterans practicing sustainable building methods. It is an extension of the Texas Gulf Coast United States Green Building Council Chapter, from which the group derives a 501-C3 nonprofit status.

For more information on how to join the local chapter of the USGBC and become a joint member of the Houston Chapter and the Piney Woods Branch, contact the USGBC Central office at 281-506-3867 or [email protected].

Membership allows residents to participate in the project.