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Best Green Houses


Cape Case Study: A fledgling studio melds architecture and technology to design two homes on Cape Cod

Truro Residence and Modern Lake House
Truro and Orleans, Massachusetts
ZeroEnergy Design

December 2009

By David Sokol

Truro Residence
Photo © Eric Roth Photography
Click the image above to tour this month’s Best Green Houses.


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Cape Cod immediately calls to mind images of rugged, shingle-clad saltboxes and weather-beaten Greek Revivals. Yet the Cape is also home to stunning works of Modernism, which embrace the elements in a manner befitting a vacation land. Indeed, The Cape Cod Modern House Trust was incorporated in 2007 to protect Jack Hall’s visually featherweight Hatch Cottage (1960), the Kugel/Gips House (1970), a dynamic bundle of volumes by Charles Zehnder, and other examples dating from this period.

Both legacies continue to this day. There are the gargantuan vacation homes gracelessly parroting the region’s most historic predecessors and, more sparingly dotting the region, works by the likes of ZeroEnergy Design (ZED). This Boston-based firm, founded by five recent Cornell grads, references past, present, and future: Two of its recently completed homes on Cape Cod, a 6,400-square-foot beach house for a large blended family in Truro and a 1,950-square-foot lakefront building nestled in the woods of Orleans, are tough like the peninsula’s oldest buildings, Modernist in form, and sustainable in their conception…


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