“The risk of failing to create healthier spaces arguably outweighs any potential risk of making a well-informed attempt to utilize or implement an innovative product or process, even if it lacks clear precedent.”

–Sustainable Strategies owner Nicole DeNamur in “Redefining the ‘Risks’ of Sustainable Buildings”

Design charrettes are critical to one of the signature deliverables of HDC’s Exemplary Buildings Program: a series of guidelines and promising practices that facilitate our sector’s ability to achieve Washington state’s building performance mandate before the 2031 deadline.

Our fifth charrette, which took place on October 22, 2020, took on the essential topics of domestic hot water and water management.


PLEASE NOTE: These slides are preliminary inputs to the process that will yield published guidelines supporting full implementation. We will announce release of those guidelines soon.

The following slides give you just a small sense of the important information that the charrette participants engaged with.

The virtual charrette was put together and delivered by Marty Kooistra of HDC, Kelly O’Rourke and Melissa Levo of Seattle Public Utilities, Steve Gelb of Emerald Cities Seattle, David Reddy of O’Brien360, Gary Klein of Gary Klein & Assoc., and Jon Heller & Shawn Oram of Ecotope.

We’re again grateful to charrette sponsors Bullitt Foundation and Edwards Mother Earth Foundation, whose support has helped us launch and grow this program.

About Our Design Charrettes

HDC’s Exemplary Buildings Program, led by a task force of remarkably committed local thought and practice leaders, champions development of housing that is simultaneously healthy, safe, ultra-energy-efficient and affordable.

We believe having standardized practices in place will help us more consistently and cost-effectively achieve our performance goals.

To define those standardized practices, we’re hosting a series of intensive design charrettes focused on several technical areas (Balanced Ventilation & Heat Recovery; Domestic Hot Water & Water Management; Healthy Building Materials; Early Integrative Design; Solar Integration; and Wall Assemblies). Each charrette will produce a set of recommended guidelines or promising practices for that particular technical area.

Domestic Hot Water & Water Management Charrette: Presentation slides available