A Modern Green Home in a Historic Colonial Town

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By Allie Weiss
A sustainable home in Lexington, Massachusetts, brings contemporary design to an unexpected region.

Designed by Boston-based firm ZeroEnergy Design, this family home "consumes approximately 85% less energy than a comparable home built to the current energy code," says Stephanie T Horowitz AIA, managing director. "The energy savings are accomplished through a super-insulated building enclosure; airtight construction; efficient heating, cooling and ventilation; and a solar array on the roof." 

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White stucco, shiplapped wood siding, and fiber cement panels adorn the exterior. The landscape architect was Soren deNiord.

White stucco, shiplapped wood siding, and fiber cement panels adorn the exterior. The landscape architect was Soren deNiord.

The 4,400-square-foot residence is designed for aging in place. A ground-floor bedroom suite enables extended stays from grandparents. Low- and no-VOC finishes create healthy indoor air quality.

The 4,400-square-foot residence is designed for aging in place. A ground-floor bedroom suite enables extended stays from grandparents. Low- and no-VOC finishes create healthy indoor air quality.

The kitchen features a Henrybuilt kitchen system and quartz countertops. The refrigerator is Sub-Zero, the range is Wolf, and the wall ovens and warming drawer are Miele.

The kitchen features a Henrybuilt kitchen system and quartz countertops. The refrigerator is Sub-Zero, the range is Wolf, and the wall ovens and warming drawer are Miele.

A 22-foot-long door allows easy access to the backyard. "We paired the lift and slide door with a retractable screen for insects and a retractable canopy above, to shade the deck and control heat gain into the house," Horowitz says.

A 22-foot-long door allows easy access to the backyard. "We paired the lift and slide door with a retractable screen for insects and a retractable canopy above, to shade the deck and control heat gain into the house," Horowitz says.

A custom staircase with wood risers is encased by glass panels. A wall of Henrybuilt's kitchen system adds storage to the hallway.

A custom staircase with wood risers is encased by glass panels. A wall of Henrybuilt's kitchen system adds storage to the hallway.

A guest bedroom leads to a private deck.

A guest bedroom leads to a private deck.

With its green features, durable materials, and clean-lined minimalism, the house represents the new generation of building for its mostly colonial neighborhood.

With its green features, durable materials, and clean-lined minimalism, the house represents the new generation of building for its mostly colonial neighborhood.