Gen7 Green School Co-Founder Builds First Prefab Winery and Central Valley's First LEED Gold Home
LODI, Calif. - When Tony Sarich set out to design his new home in California Wine Country, two things were certain: it would have a winery and it would be built with LEED Green Building Rating System certification in mind. After all, Sarich, a local grape grower, is also co-founder of Manteca-based American Modular Systems (AMS), the manufacturer of Gen7, an affordable line of high-performance classrooms designed to meet and exceed the CHPS and LEED criteria for green schools.
“We learned a tremendous amount about sustainable design when developing Gen7,” Sarich said. “Our goal was to create a healthy, energy-efficient learning environment, using the cleanest materials and the latest technology to provide a complete green solution. I want to apply what we've learned to my own home, creating an eco-friendly winery and living space that can be an inspiration to others.”
Construction began last December on phase one of the two-phase project, a 3,000-square-foot pre-fabricated winery called River Vine. The finished structures hope to become the Central Valley's first LEED Gold home and the first prefab winery built offsite to LEED Gold standards. Assembling the winery at the enclosed 280,000-square-foot AMS manufacturing facility contains costs, minimizes waste and preserves the integrity of the high-quality building materials. The 90 percent-completed winery was scheduled to be delivered and installed on Sarich's 50-acre property in the Lodi Wine Region on Thursday, Feb. 3.
The winery will be state-of-the-art, blending energy-efficient mechanical and electrical systems with the cutting-edge green technology perfected in Gen7 schools. Roof-mounted solar panels provide enough energy to power the winery, as well as the natural well and future house. To keep the space cool, a super-tight building envelope uses 100 percent recycled blue jean insulation with an R-value of 50 on the roof and walls. Innovative smart lighting features LED lights throughout, coupled with natural daylight harvesting to reduce energy usage by 65 percent.
Like the Gen7 classroom, both the winery and adjacent dwelling will be constructed from recycled and recyclable materials. All wood is FSC certified and sourced from responsibly managed forests. The siding is 150-year-old reclaimed oak barn wood. Paints and finishes are low- and no-VOC (volatile organic compounds) to keep the air clean and odor-free.
Designed in partnership with renowned architect Marmol Radziner, Sarich's personal residence will be phase two of the River Vine project. Factory-built to LEED Gold standards, it will be delivered in fall 2011.