(360) 789-9669 codeinnovations@ecobuilding.org

Graywater Reuse in the Apartments at Bud Clark Commons

This building provides 130 transitional housing units and support services to people in Portland experiencing homelessness. It was one of the first in Oregon to treat wash water from showers, bathtubs, and residential clothes-washing machines, known as graywater, to flush toilets. It was permitted using a Statewide Alternative Method under Oregon’s Specialty Plumbing Code that allows commercial greywater reuse.

Thermal Break Shear Wall at Sage Green

For this 5-unit entry-level, zero-net-energy subdivision in Washington County, Oregon, the builder used an innovative “Thermal Break Shear” (TBS) wall assembly with rigid foam insulation between the lumber framing and plywood sheathing in an otherwise conventional light-frame wall assembly. The Code Official required proof the proposed shear wall assembly would be capable to resist code level seismic forces, so the builder contracted with Oregon State University to perform destructive seismic testing, which demonstrated not only that the assembly complies with structural code, but surprisingly, TBS wall is significantly more resilient in an earthquake than a conventional wall.