We received a lot of feedback on our kitchen and have revised some of our decisions. Thank you for your contributions. Throughout this post you will find renderings of the design reworked.
Just to give a bit more detail about the kitchen, it is approximately 14 feet long and the countertops are about 2 feet wide. When it comes to materials we most likely will go with apple-ply or green MDF, but it all depends on what the final say is from Nic and Chad, so we will see. As far as the mobile units go, we envisioned that the pieces would be stainless steel for durability and strength. However, Pappajohn Woodworking is assembling the cabinetry and will let us know if that is a wise decision. We wanted to better explain how the mobile units are able to move out from underneath the counter while base cabinet storage space remains. In the pictures it may not be clear that the cabinets are attached directly to the wall, similar to the upper cabinets, so the mobile countertops would fit around them, hence the storage space is always usable. We really enjoyed the suggestion to looking into RV living as a space saving inspiration and have decided that we will revise the counter top a bit, if it is feasible, to increase the mobile work spaces past 25% to an even 50. We also wanted to note that as of right now the mobile countertops will be locked in place by a stopper on the casters themselves. As of yet, we have not designed a way for them to lock to the refrigerator island since there is the possibility that the user will not place them in that position. However when the design is finalized, we will know for sure whether or not there is enough stability or if they need to be latched onto surrounding structures.
On to recycling. We did have qualms about the amount of space we allotted for it, so we decided that the unit for recycling and trash will just be for recycling. This is in hopes that between the recycling unit and the composter the owner would be discouraged from creating “unusable” waste. The recycling drawer consists of three removable bins, a larger one for plastic and two equal sized bins for glass and paper. This means that the homeowner would need to purchase their own trash bin, which would hopefully be smaller, since the kitchen provides more sustainable methods of waste management. We also think the recycling/trash chute to the basement is a great idea and will be sure to suggest it as another extension from the kitchen to the basement along with the food chest.
Now on to water issues. Some readers had questions about what type of foot pedal system we were looking into. We have done the most research into Footfaucet.com, a business that makes foot faucet kits along with an installation manual of how to connect the pedals to a control box that is wired to the garbage disposal or dishwasher for energy and to the water valves. Based on their installation packet and diagrams the system appeared to be relatively simple so we have yet to discuss it with a plumbing contractor, however based on your concerns we are looking into what would be the response to this type of installation.
We also researched a bit on dishwashers and the advantage of having them to the right or left of the sink. There is no conclusive evidence of it needing to be on one side or the other however some right handed consumers have mentioned that it is more comfortable for them to load and unload when the dishwasher is to their right, most likely because it is parallel to the more dominant side of their body. Thus in consideration of the kitchen user’s ergonomic experience we will suggest to Postgreen that future homeowners be given the option of having the dishwasher to the left or right of the sink based on their preference, although it will remain to the left as a default.
Thank you again for your comments and feel free to leave more. This is our final blog post for postgreen, but we have enjoyed our time working on this kitchen concept for one of their homes. We hope that in the future, if any of you get to experience one you will let us know what you think, and whether or not it provided you with a space that was more energy, water, waste and work efficient, making it in fact an extreme green kitchen.
-Megan and Victoria
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