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Michael Gardner at 2019 The New American Remodel

What Will Smart Homes Look Like 10 Years From Now?

BY PATRICK LUCAS AUSTIN

 

It’s 6 A.M., and the alarm clock is buzzing earlier than usual. It’s not a malfunction: the smart clock scanned your schedule and adjusted because you’ve got that big presentation first thing in the morning. Your shower automatically turns on and warms to your preferred 103°F. The electric car is ready to go, charged by the solar panels or wind turbine on your roof. When you get home later, there’s an unexpected package waiting, delivered by drone. You open it to find cold medicine. Turns out, health sensors embedded in your bathroom detected signs of an impending illness and placed an order automatically. Good thing you already knocked that presentation out of the park.

 

That, at least, is the utopian version of the smart home that exists 10 years out. Swedish research firm Berg Insight says 63 million American homes will qualify as “smart” by 2022, with everything from Internet-connected light bulbs to cameras that let us spy on our pets from the office (there were nearly 130 million homes in the U.S. in total in 2018). But a decade from now, experts say, we’ll move from turning the lights on and off with our voices to total immersion in the Internet of Things (IoT). Thanks to advancements in artificial intelligence, the smartest homes will be able to truly learn about their owners or occupants, eventually anticipating their needs. Developments in robotics will give us machines that offer a helping hand with cleaning, cooking and more. New sensors will keep tabs on our well-being. Central to all of this will be the data that smart homes collect, analyze and act upon, helping to turn the houses of the future from a mere collection of gadgets and accessories into truly “smart” homes.

 

All the automated attentiveness will come with a high price tag: consumers will spend $123 billion on IoT gear by 2021, according to advisory firm ABI Research, a number that’s likely to rise thereafter. Aside from Internet-connected televisions, manufacturers are putting their R&D and marketing budgets behind home-monitoring and security gadgets–they will have 22.6% of the smart-home market share by 2023, estimates research firm IDC, with smart speakers and lighting equipment not far behind, at 15.4% and 11.8% respectively. There are already at least 7 billion connected IoT devices, according to market-research company IoT Analytics. But as smart-home technology becomes easier to use and its benefits become more clear, the industry is poised to take off. “Sustained growth is expected to continue … as consumers adopt multiple devices within their homes and as global availability of products and services increases,” according to IDC.

Of course, as our homes learn more about us, keeping them secure will become all the more important. Every device that’s connected to the Internet is a potential target for hackers. When we’re talking about devices that can unlock our homes from afar, peer into our living rooms using cameras, and collect our most sensitive and personal data, cybersecurity will become all the more vital. Any kind of massive breach that turns off consumers, says Daniel Cooley, chief strategy officer at electronics-component manufacturer Silicon Labs, could be catastrophic for the industry. “I call it a mass-extinction event for the Internet of Things,” he says.

 

A range of technological developments will drive smart-home technology well beyond what’s available on store shelves today. Innovations in artificial intelligence, for example, stand to upend almost everything in our lives, including our homes. You might already be using some kind of AI-powered voice-assistant gadget to get the latest news or weather forecast every morning. But in the smart home of the future, those AI platforms could serve as the brain for entire homes, learning about residents and coordinating and automating all of their various smart gadgets. IoT company Crestron, for example, is working on software that tracks a person’s habits, like which music they want to hear in the morning or which lights they want to be on at a certain time of day. Then, once it gets the hang of a user’s preferences, it automatically plays just the right playlists or dims the lights before bedtime. “That’s really the next evolutionary step in true automation,” says John Clancy, head of Crestron’s residential business.

 

Robots, too, will have a role to play in the smart home of the future. Smart vacuum cleaners like iRobot’s Roomba are already picking up after us, while products like the Aibo, a robotic dog for children, show how they might help keep us company like a pet. As for the future? Robotic-furniture company Ori Living is working with Ikea on pieces that change based on your needs, getting the bed out of the way when you need a desk, or hiding your closet when it’s dinnertime. Design firm Design3 recently showed off a smart-home robot concept, CARL. The fabric-covered bot is meant to slowly roll around your home, activating its retractable cameras and sensors to detect intruders, notify you of any harmful emissions or keep an eye on your pet. And computer-graphics company Nvidia is working on a smart robotic arm that can act as its owner’s personal sous chef, doing everything from slicing and dicing veggies to helping with cleanup; it could be particularly useful for busy parents or disabled users. If such a device went into production, cameras and sensors could help prevent it from accidentally injuring an innocent bystander who’s just on the way to the fridge for a quick snack before dinnertime.

 

Health applications will drive at least some of the smart-home growth over the next decade. Cameras and sensors embedded in refrigerators will suggest more nutritious alternatives if people are reaching for the sugary sodas a little too frequently. Similar technology in medicine cabinets will check if residents have taken their prescriptions. And sensors will even show up in toilets to check for signs of any potential health conditions by scanning human waste before it’s flushed. Bathroom-fixture company Toto has experimented with urine-sampling toilets, while one company has filed patents for devices including a mirror that’s meant to monitor users’ health just by analyzing their skin. Homes will have health sensors of their own, too, that check for issues like water damage, pest infestation and so on, alerting owners to any potential problems before they become far costlier to manage.

 

All this learning and scanning that the smart home of the future will be doing may understandably raise privacy concerns. Indeed, some smart-home devices have already been targeted by hackers, whether to access the data they hold or to use them as tools in larger cybersecurity schemes. In 2016, hackers took over hundreds of thousands of insecure IoT devices, then used them to send bogus Internet traffic to target websites in hopes of crashing them; the incident temporarily crippled Internet connections throughout parts of North America and Europe. Government regulation is in the works too. A bill put forth by Virginia Senator Mark Warner in March would push the government to set up minimum security requirements for smart devices used by federal agencies; such requirements could eventually become standard for the industry at large.

 

You’re more likely than not to end up in a connected home one day, whether you mean to or not. Architect Michael Gardner, founder of construction firm Luxus Design Build, says homes are increasingly being built “smart” from the ground up. “It’s such an integral part of the home that we’re designing it from the beginning, where beforehand technology was always an afterthought,” he says. Ultimately, experts say, people will come to see smart-home technology as essential as electricity, refrigeration or air-conditioning. Smart-home tech, and the data it collects, will “be like plumbing,” says Cooley, from electronics-component manufacturer Silicon Labs. “You’ll rely on it.”

 

Original published in Time Magazine. To read more of the issue go to time.com.

2019 The New American Remodel

Avant-Gardner

Michael Gardner creates a masterpiece of technology, design and home performance at The New American Remodel.

 

BY Jessi C. Acuna

 
Local architect Michael Gardner is no stranger to showcasing innovation and design in his projects.  The sought-after designer has left his mark in Las Vegas’ most prestigious neighborhoods – Spanish Trail, The Ridges, Ascaya.  So it’s no surprise he was tasked as the visionary behind The New American Remodel, the official show home of National Association of Home Builders’ annual gathering.  Located in a historic neighborhood on Pinto Lane, this is the first in Gardner’s portfolio for his new all-in-one design-build service firm, Luxus Design Build.
 
You Previously did homes in 2013 and 2016.  What are some of the most innovative elements of the 2019 home?  Form a technology standpoint, the full integration of the home with the Crestron system, you’re able to control everything. The home security, all of the lighting, your fire features, your television, all your mechanical systems are all integrated through an app.  You’re able to control the house from within the home, out in the orchard or 10,000 miles away.
 
What about the sustainability standards? As far as the technology that most people didn’t see, we call it a building science design approach.  We built these wall assemblies and roof assemblies to mitigate any heat gain or mitigate as much heat gain to the home as possible.  We created this nice tight thermal envelope, really reducing the thermal bridging.
 
Which feature would you like to see in other Las Vegas Homes as we continue to grow?  The biggest thing, which is the most different than a lot of the other homes, is this gas heat pump HVAC system.  The efficiency to cost benefit is one of the best investments clients can make, especially when you pair it with solar because you can really then start to offset a lot more of your costs.
 
What are the trends to look out for? The sizes of homes are starting to dwindle, especially on the higher end.  The days of 20,000-30,000-square-foot houses are becoming much more of an anomaly.  People are spending a lot more money on higher-quality materials and getting more sophisticated with the palette of the materials – creating the use and contrast of smooth and textural environments so it’s this transition.
 
Original published in Modern Luxury Vegas Magazine.  To read more of the issue go to vegasmagazine.com.

2019 The New American Home

New American Remodel built for energy efficiency

Published in Las Vegas Review Journal By Kristen Peterson Real Estate Millions on May 17, 2019.

Having recently completed a LEED-designated home in Spanish Trail, the Las Vegas architect selected for the National Association of Home Builders’ New American Remodel was going all-in on the farm-to-table concept. And with net-zero energy consumption, he was aiming for the National Green Building Standard’s Emerald designation.

“Everybody talks about buildings and being sustainable,” Gardner said while standing inside the dining room of the nearly 6,000-square-foot downtown home with sliding glass walls that look onto a landscaped courtyard and living space. “But I’ve always felt that there’s this loop that we needed to close.”

LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. It is a rating system used by the U.S. Green Building Council to measure a building’s efficiency.

Walking through the home’s main kitchen and past the prep kitchen, which includes an urban cultivator for microgreens, Gardner headed into the backyard, with an orchard, gardens, grape vines and a chicken coop. The home’s ample refrigeration and freezers store the harvests and the daily eggs from the chickens.

“We’ve gotten to this very scary place where some children think that a tomato comes from a grocery store, that it doesn’t come from the ground,” said Gardner, principal of Studio G Architecture and Luxus Design Build, who advocates holistic architecture and sustainability. “When we have that detachment, we take a lot of things for granted.”

The 2019 New American Remodel at 2720 Pinto Lane, which debuted at the International Builder’s Show in February and sold for $4.6 million in April, features a West Coast-contemporary design with mid-mod elements: flat rooflines, clerestory windows and textured light stone that continues indoors.

The five-bedroom, two-story home comes with solar energy, a home automation system, an indoor elevator, gated entry and clever recreational vehicle storage.

Its exterior of natural materials — textured stone, wood and Kingspan metal — is influenced by other homes in the neighborhood.

Working with participating suppliers and contractors, Gardner gutted the home and removed unsound walls to open up the floor plan. He extended the home deeper into the property so that it and its three-car garage wraps around a strategically shaded landscaped courtyard with its own full kitchen, swimming pool, outdoor living room and natural design elements.

Gardner, who was architect for the 2013 and 2016 New American Homes, said this was his first New American Remodel project and the first home he both designed and built. The project, engineered and designed by his Luxus Design Build, allowed him to create the home as if he were going to live there.

“This is kind of an urban-esque environment with all the properties built in around,” he said. “There’s no opportunity for a view, like in newer developments where everyone plays up the view, so we had to kind of create our own view.”

The central outdoor courtyard is the home’s focal point. Glass walls in the main rooms look out and open up to it. Inside, the spacious, high-ceiling living room, anchored by a large white stone fireplace, recessed ceilings and indirect lighting, complemented by natural colors and varying textures, creates intimacy and warmth. Clean lines, organic materials and textures provide a sense of calm. Porcelain floor tiles, designed to look like concrete, continue throughout the home.

When Gardner opens the sliding-glass walls of the living room, the inside and outside entertainment areas are one. The main kitchen, a gorgeous minimalist area with ample counter space and bar seating, also opens to the teak-tiled courtyard.

A stairway off the dining room leads to a cozy, second-floor sitting room that opens through a bookcase into a spacious master bedroom with a kitchenette, high windows, master bath and large walk-in closet/dressing room. A door opens to an outdoor “catwalk” connecting to the second- floor outdoor kitchen and entertainment area with a high-end pizza oven and framed views of rooftops and trees.

“With remodels, you don’t know what you’re getting into,” said Gardner, who is LEED AP-certified and a member of the U.S. Green Building Council. “We tried to maintain as much as we could.”

When designing the remodel, Gardner studied the outdoor spaces as the sun moved across the sky to determine the best energy efficiency. Overhangs, walls and specialized window sizes are among the many elements designed to keep the house cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

To pay homage to the home’s original owner, a Union Pacific Railroad engineer, railroad tiles that were left on the property were incorporated into walls and gates and used as other functional and decorative enhancements, including gates enclosing downstairs bedroom patios.

In all, the elegant quiet, spacious home, custom-built to blend in with the neighborhood and its rich history, as well as the desert climate, doubles as a zen-like retreat, an escape from the outside world with private indoor-outdoor living.

“The stigma for Vegas homes is often glitzy and poorly designed houses,” Gardner said. “The level of design is getting significantly better. But we still have that shock-and-awe, casino-type design mentality here. It’s important to show that that’s not necessarily always the case.”

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About the Home
Price: Sold for $4.6 million

Location: 2720 Pinto Lane

Size: Sits on 2 acres, 6,000 square feet, two stories, five bedrooms, three-car garage.

Features: Energy efficient, solar energy, a home automation system, an indoor elevator, gated entry, center courtyard, two outdoor kitchens, clever recreational vehicle storage, orchard and chicken coop.

History: Michael Gardner of Studio G Architecture designed and built the 2019 New American Home Remodel for the National Association of Home Builders’ International Builder’s Show, which was held in Las Vegas in February. It was sold in April for $4.6 million.

To view the full article click here.

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The New American Home Remodel Phase 4

[vc_row row_type=”row” type=”full_width” text_align=”left” video=”” css_animation=””][vc_column][vc_column_text]We are thrilled to watch how this home has come together.  Everyone has been spectacular to work with.  Everything is coming together extremely nicely and we look forward to unveiling the final product at the International Builders Show in February.  Stay tuned to our YouTube channel and blog for more videos and photos.

 

The Video Transcript:

Everything is going great we are kind of in the last stretch of everything.  We have pretty much got most of the exterior completed it’s pretty spectacular to see it get to this point.  You know we took a lot of inspiration from the neighborhood.  This neighborhood is really kind of an old-school Vegas rural agricultural area, we wanted to keep consistency through the home.  You will notice that when you go through the home, there is the same stone inside and outside, the same colors and textures and so we wanted it to feel more like a home rather than a show home.

 

The interior cabinets are coming out spectacular, Wood Mode has done a great job at providing us some beautiful cabinets that are really unique.  We are starting on all the tile floor and we’re starting to set recessed cans so things are going pretty smooth.

 

Everybody is really excited to see the kingspan metal on the exterior it’s really unique.  We are utilizing a new application for the exterior stone, we are getting tons of compliments on the design of that and how we installed it in the dry stack configuration.  Environmental Stern Works is awesome to work with, their whole crew, the installers have been spectacular.  This was kind of a great collaboration you know they have been really receptive.  It took a little while to get the color figured out, there was a lot of back and forth and that’s what’s been great about working with them. They have really stepped up to help us deliver the look and feel that we want this house to have.

 

Everybody that has been a part of the home has been spectacular.  We had a vision of creating this rustic, modern, organic composition and everybody’s really seeing it now.   I think everybody is really buying into how unique this house is and it’s great to see all these pieces that you know were all single elements become a whole in the home.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

The Garage Design for the 2019 New American Remodel

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Watch the video above to learn more about our design for the 2019 New American Remodel garage.  The garage was designed, as Michael explains, to function as both a garage and a man cave.  Check it out!

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The Video Transcript:

The square footage of the house is about 5,200 square feet. We have a three-car garage plus an RV garage, which most people go why would you do an RV garage?  In that neighborhood a lot of people either have boats or have fifth wheels.  They have RVs and even the next door neighbor runs a landscaping company out of their property so the ability to store equipment in a climate controlled environment, is pretty critical.  We felt that that was kind of a really nice bit and we intentionally made it larger than normal.

So most RV garages will be 18 feet by 40 45 foot but what we wanted to be able to do is if it was a car collector or someone that had the equipment they could kind of stack up a bunch of different things.  I could turn it into a workshop so we’ve really turned the garage into a man cave so we’ve got a workbench.  They’ll have TVs refrigeration, a small little dishwasher, a urinal in there.  So it kind of becomes a space without it being a livable space.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

The 2019 New American Remodel Vision and Complications

[vc_row row_type=”row” type=”full_width” text_align=”left” video=”” css_animation=””][vc_column][vc_separator type=”transparent” up=”35″ down=”0″][vc_column_text]As you may already know, The National Association of Home Builders has chosen Michael as the architect for the 2019 New American Remodel.

In this video clip, Michael discusses some of the unique challenges he and his team have been facing during Phase I of construction. Michael also explains the importance of the location and his vision for the remodeled home, as well as some of the complications his team continues to conquer during this process.[/vc_column_text][vc_separator type=”transparent” up=”35″ down=”0″][vc_column_text]

This is his third project for the International Builders Show and his first in the remodel category. He was selected to design the New American Home for the show in 2013 and 2016.  This is Michael’s first New American Remodel project, as well as the first home he is both designing and building.

Stay tuned for progress updates here as we continue the remodel process.

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