WCPO.com (OH) (12/30/16)
Former WCPO-TV reporter Laure Quinlivan and her husband Greg Ruthman opted to discard plans to remodel their 102-year-old Ohio house and get a new, certified energy-efficient residence built by John Hueber Homes. The couple demolished the old, leaky house in favor of the new building, which received a gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED program. The new house's eco-friendly features, which nearly halved the owner's energy bills, include three 150-foot-deep wells that provide the home's geothermal heating and cooling, and many locally sourced materials. The kitchen backsplash integrates recycled glass subway tiles and accent tiles, and Quinlivan says the builder generated only one-eighth the waste produced during traditional home construction. The house's great room features a corner where light comes in from two walls of energy-deflecting and noise-absorbing windows. Interior French doors also allow natural light to flow through the house. Quinlivan was a champion of Cincinnati's innovative program that rewarded LEED-certified properties with 15 years of tax abatement, and as a city council member she led a redraft of the 2007 program to boost awards based on the level of energy efficiency achieved.