The Lake Martin Cabin was built as a family retreat on a lot that has sheltered 5 generations over 60 years.
The cabin itself had to be flexible enough to accommodate 4 generations of the family simultaneously, yet feel cozy when a couple comes to stay by themselves. The homeowners wanted to create a resource efficient, healthy home that preserved the wooded ecology of their lake side property. They decided to use LEED for Homes certification as a way to quantify those goals, measure progress during design and construction, and hold all members of the design and construction team responsible for their achievement. The lake cabin is built in Elmore County AL where there is no official permitting process, no structural inspections, plumbing inspections, etc. The homeowners also appreciated the oversight of the third party green rater, and the performance testing and visual inspections integrated into the LEED certification process.
The cabin is the first LEED certified home on the over 44,000 acre lake, and the homeowners hope that it serves as a positive example of sustainable development in the region. Each year since 2011, Auburn University students from the school of Building Science have visited the lake cabin to learn about LEED for Homes and get some hands on lessons in sustainable design and construction practices.
The original cabin on site was plagued by leaks, and had significant issues with the wiring, plumbing, and foundation. After spending 4 years working on renovation designs, the owners finally decided to start over. Because of a strong “waste not, want not” mentality and the sentimental attachment to the old cabin, they decided to deconstruct it entirely and re-use the wood in their new home.