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Arizona-based VALI Homes recently completed building the Loma Linda 2, a net-zero home designed by Matthew Salenger, of coLAB studio. Located in downtown Phoenix, the modern, single-family home, with three-bedrooms, two-bathrooms, and an entry courtyard, creates more energy than it consumes by utilizing energy saving technology.

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On the east and west sides of the house, exposure is limited, while on the southern side, a four foot overhang helps shade the structure. The home is clad in Biomimicry one-inch thick custom steel siding, which keeps direct sunlight off of the walls. On hot days, EPS insulation around the edges of the slab allows the shaded ground to act as a heat sink to cool the house naturally.

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The architect was inspired by case study homes of the 1960s, and aimed to design a high-quality, design-focused residence, but within a low-to-mid cost range.

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Cellulose insulation fills the 12-inch thick walls helping to keep the perimeter airtight, which reduces energy use by up to about 90%.

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The entry courtyard flows right into the living space, only separated by floor-to-ceiling glass doors and windows, which keeps the space filled with natural light.

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Caroline Williamson is Editorial Director of Design Milk. She has a BFA in photography from SCAD and can usually be found searching for vintage wares, doing New York Times crossword puzzles in pen, or reworking playlists on Spotify.