The world owes Germany a Danke schön for its green standards, but the JustK house does zero-energy with unusual style. Amunt incorporated a geothermal heat exchanger and triple-glazed windows into the strict planning regulations, which dictated the pitched roof and narrow structure (the asymmetric profile accommodates a neighbor who asked that her view of nearby Hohentübingen castle be left intact). Built for Dominik Bless-Martenson, Katrin Martenson, and their four children, JustK (the name comes from its location on the Justinus-Kerner-Strasse) can be divided into two separate units, giving options as the family grows up and leaves the nest.
Amsterdam-based contributing editor Jane Szita took the train to Ghent–three hours away, but a very different Franco-Flemish culture. While touring Van Everbroeck's house, she took time to revisit Jan van Eyck's 15th-century painted church altarpiece. "Flemish painters' works have a depth of color artists had never achieved before," says Szita. "Ghent was the perfect place for an assignment; one could argue that the city was the birthplace of the modern color palette."