Unless something goes horribly wrong, I will own (jointly) my first house by the end of May. For a number of reasons, we have chosen to move to my wife's home town of Hopedale, MA. I'm excited about this move for a number of reasons. And not just that we're buying our own house.
Hopedale has an interesting history that still influences the town today. Founded as a utopian socialist commune in the 1840's, it eventually transitioned into a model factory town dominated by the Draper Corporation. Closed in the 1980's the Draper factory still lies vacant in the center of town. The town recently formed a committee to find a new use for the dormant building. It is an interesting time for the town as the reuse of the Draper property will redefine the identity of the town for at least the next few decades.
Meanwhile, I'm getting my hands on a one hundred plus year old house. It needs some cosmetic work, which I'm excited to get into; but I am more looking forward to the chance to apply sustainable thinking to my own house. I can't do anything drastic, but there are many mall ways to green a house that don't involve rebuilding from the ground up.
Here I will post ideas I have for both these projects and my thoughts about sustainability in general. I am not a planning expert or architect; I have very little experience building anything or working on a house; and I have no real experience with green design. However I have some theoretical training in ecology and complex systems that is crying out to be put to some practical use.