As sustainable materials and technology become more important, incorporating them seamlessly into attractive and livable homes is an essential skill architects bring to the table. Many homes on the 2019 Homes by Architects Tour showcase the marriage of sustainable elements with beautiful and livable design.

Home 7, “Split Box,” is a remodeled split-level home featuring many sustainable elements, demonstrating the way a classic design can be updated for modern living. Sustainable features include a car charging station, solar panels, new windows, and improved insulation and air infiltration.

Home 10, “Edmund Residence,” is a “forever” home for its occupants and includes forward-thinking sustainable design elements. Low-maintenance finishes and solar panels reduce maintenance needs and increase efficiency, all while maintaining a modern, attractive look that blends in well with its beautiful setting.

In Home 6, “Huntington Residence,” we see a different kind of sustainable element: a green roof. The green roof is a natural fit, incorporating into both the clients’ sustainable values and desire to create a strong connection between indoor and outdoor spaces. The result is modern, beautiful, and sustainable home that fits in well with its established Wayzata neighborhood.

An often-overlooked approach to sustainability in residential and commercial architecture is updating existing buildings. Below is just one example of many sustainable historic remodels on the tour. (Read about the others here and here!)

In their remodel of the oldest home on the tour, built in 1856, the architects of Home 13, “Asa Parker 1856” were able to reduce energy usage by simply nottearing down a standing structure and purchasing all-new materials. They also updated efficiency through special attention to HVAC systems, insulation, roof ventilation, and more. Original features were reused or else donated to the nonprofit Better Futures of MN, Inc,  resulting in a beautiful home that honors its historic legacy while being up-to-date for modern living.

Tickets to the 12th annual Homes by Architects Tour are on sale! Learn more at

The 2019 Tour is supported by Marvin Windows & Doors, Elevation Homes, Hagstrom Builder, Landscape Renovations, Stinson Builders, Inc., White Oaks Savanna, Pella Windows & Doors, Belrose Hardwood Floors, Dovetail Renovations, Frost Cabinets, Hage Homes, Hirshfield’s, Lelch Audio/Video, Martin Patrick 3, Otto Painting Design, Orijin Stone, Semihandmade, Showcase Renovations, The Sitting Room, Synergy Products, and Urban Ecosystems, Inc.

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