Echo Logical

written by:
photos by:
February 26, 2009
Originally published in Growing Up Green
Los Angeles is not all mini-malls and highways. As Eric Garcetti, president of the City Council, shows, it is eminently possible to live green in the City of Angels. By putting solar power and recycled materials to use, he and his partner transformed a mid-century house on a cozy hillside plot into a sustainable home with garden terraces and panoramic views.
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  The home doesn't hide its extensive renovations: with all-new windows, installed to maximize both views and solar exposure, it is quite visible where old meets new.
    The home doesn't hide its extensive renovations: with all-new windows, installed to maximize both views and solar exposure, it is quite visible where old meets new.
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  Eric Garcetti's 11-year-old Toyota Rav4-EV sits in front of the house, awaiting its next electric fill-up.
    Eric Garcetti's 11-year-old Toyota Rav4-EV sits in front of the house, awaiting its next electric fill-up.
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  Garcetti cleans up the rooftop array of solar panels. In the foreground, hidden beneath trees and greenery, is the couple's garden.
    Garcetti cleans up the rooftop array of solar panels. In the foreground, hidden beneath trees and greenery, is the couple's garden.
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  Amy Wakeland prepares some of the fruits and vegetables that she regularly harvests from the backyard garden.
    Amy Wakeland prepares some of the fruits and vegetables that she regularly harvests from the backyard garden.
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  The dining room. Much of the furniture was purchased from vintage modern home stores in L.A. The furnishings represent an attitude—whenever possible, recycle, reuse, and support local manufacturers—as well as a strong sense of aesthetics at home.
    The dining room. Much of the furniture was purchased from vintage modern home stores in L.A. The furnishings represent an attitude—whenever possible, recycle, reuse, and support local manufacturers—as well as a strong sense of aesthetics at home.
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  By eliminating the drop ceilings, the architects opened up the ground level, which had been broken up into several rooms. This not only revealed the original beams, it also brought a much more expansive sense of space.
    By eliminating the drop ceilings, the architects opened up the ground level, which had been broken up into several rooms. This not only revealed the original beams, it also brought a much more expansive sense of space.
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  With its easy access, the flat roof is never hard to maintain.
    With its easy access, the flat roof is never hard to maintain.
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  They lengthened the kitchen by removing a ground-level bathroom. This created a much larger kitchen/living/dining area, complete with a central fireplace.
    They lengthened the kitchen by removing a ground-level bathroom. This created a much larger kitchen/living/dining area, complete with a central fireplace.
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  An outdoor water feature adds a subtle soundtrack to the property while keeping the plants irrigated.
    An outdoor water feature adds a subtle soundtrack to the property while keeping the plants irrigated.
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  The broad deck and seating area are perfect for the Mediterranean climate and invite guests outdoors.
    The broad deck and seating area are perfect for the Mediterranean climate and invite guests outdoors.
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  Wakeland goes to work on the garden terraces where the couple grows much of their own food.
    Wakeland goes to work on the garden terraces where the couple grows much of their own food.
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  The second-floor deck looks out onto the green canopy of Garcetti and Wakeland's neighborhood and indoors to a pair of Vatne Møbler rosewood lounge chairs.
    The second-floor deck looks out onto the green canopy of Garcetti and Wakeland's neighborhood and indoors to a pair of Vatne Møbler rosewood lounge chairs.
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  A well-placed writing desk takes advantage of the view.
    A well-placed writing desk takes advantage of the view.
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  The bathroom includes a walk-in tub.
    The bathroom includes a walk-in tub.
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  Garcetti and Wakeland enjoy a quiet afternoon, sitting in what used to be two separate bedrooms. By removing a wall, the space now serves as an office and den, divided only by sliding doors.
    Garcetti and Wakeland enjoy a quiet afternoon, sitting in what used to be two separate bedrooms. By removing a wall, the space now serves as an office and den, divided only by sliding doors.
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