I really don't know what to think of this. When I saw the first part of the story on the news, my first reaction was "that is just ridiculous. How can anyone justify building that for just two people??!!!?!? What a waste of resources and land."
I carried this mentality through the rest of the story even though the facts presented were rather impressive, and semi-positive.
WATCH the video HERE
Here are the details:
Pensmore is a large residential chateau under construction in the Ozark mountains between Springfield and Branson, MO. And when I say large, I mean LARGE. It is 72,000 square feet. No, that is not a typo. It is 72,000 square feet of living space. Thirteen bedrooms and 14 bathrooms for TWO people. Steven T. Huff and his wife. According to him, it’s just a large second home. I would like to see his main residence.
It is built with cement. That's a lot of cement.
But here is the up-side, all be it not quite enough in my mind to justify the extravagance of it all. It is green. According to the website, it uses the "practical application of new technologies to bring to life a modern version of the Jeffersonian ideal of the self-sufficient sustainable estate." Using buzz words like "cost-effective, cutting-edge, green building technologies, total life-cycle",
Pensmore claims to offer the following
•Very low, near net-zero energy consumption
•Extreme disaster resistance to tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, fire, flood, insect damage, etc.
•Low maintenance requirements
•Durability measured in centuries, not years
•Scalability across a multitude of applications from small residential structures to commercial buildings
•Pensmore is offered as a guidepost for the design of cost-effective, sustainable structures into the future.
They have geo-thermal, solar, rainwater collection - pretty much everything we would want in a home if we could design and build one ourselves. Maybe not with 14 bathrooms to clean, but I can see how this project, however ostentatious, will be something to learn from. If this guy can afford it, than I guess it is his choice but I still can't justify the expense of the materials being used.
I think a better example would be for a housing company to employ all these techniques and technologies into building a model residential home. Like it or not, we have developments springing up all over the place and I cringe when I see press board being used for walls. Lets show average people that these technologies work, are safe and are functional - and offer the luxuries that people want.
Pensmore will, according to the website, offer scaled-down versions of the building techniques for homes and businesses, but they could have saved a lot of cement if they had just started a little smaller in the first place.
I encourage you to visit the Pensmore website and read about the technologies. See if you get the same vibe as I do - great to go green but something still bothers me about it. Let me know what you think. Am I just looking for a down side?