Before talking about the latest New Norris House happenings, I should introduce myself. My name is Eric Bennett, one of the Graduate Research Assistants for the New Norris House. I am currently in my final year of the Master of Architecture program at UTK. I received my undergraduate degree in architecture from Clemson University in 2007 and I was able to get a few years of professional experience before returning to school last year. This is my first semester being involved with the New Norris House and I will be specifically working to interpret all of the energy data that is being monitored in the home. I will also help lead several tours through the home.
Last week, the New Norris House hosted a tour for the local USGBC members. It was a great learning experience for the tour attendees as well as a test for the New Norris House team to answer some specific questions from well versed local professionals. The USGBC members were led through the different phases of the project's development, from the historical precedent of the Norris community, preliminary design, off-site and on-site construction, landscape design, and through the current Phase IV, energy and water monitoring programs.
While all of the tour guests were very impressed with the overall sustainability aspects of the home's design and systems integration, the greatest compliments were aimed towards the excellent craft of construction. With all the credit going to the "newly skilled" UT students involved with the project, the New Norris House was referred to as "a beautifully conceived and executed work". So to all of the current and past students involved with the project, your hard work and dedication is being recognized, well received, and will hopefully pave the way for more design-build projects to take place within the University. I am sure that the experience gained by working on the New Norris House will have an immeasurable impact on your future career. I am excited to be involved with such a great project and I look forward to sharing what we learn.
The New Norris House is a design/build effort from the University of Tennessee's College of Architecture and Design. Began in 2009, the home was designed and built by UT students in collaboration with Clayton Homes. The built project is now complete and the final phase of the project has begun. A team of 4 people (2 living in the home, and 2 graduate researchers) will rigorously document the experience via qualitative assessments and quantitative measurements, posting results to this blog.