Author Archive

A Report from the Greenbuild Conference in Chicago – Part 1

Posted on: November 14th, 2007 by Barbara Campagna

 

The Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park, Chicago, ILNovember 7th-9th, 2007

In only 7 years, the US Green Building Conference’s Annual conference, Greenbuild, has grown to become one of the largest conferences in our field, with over 25,000 people attending this year. The irony of bringing so many people together from around the hemisphere to discuss how to limit our human role in climate change, is not lost on me, or most of the other attendees I would guess. I will happily stay in denial over how much extra carbon is inflicted on the world by such a huge gathering. How many miles of ice loss at the poles or Greenland could be traced to the gathering of this group? But what’s the alternative? Do we become hermits and never leave our homes? The answer to protection of our world can’t be that we lose all human contact because then why bother? What’s the most sustainable world? Well, probably one without us in it….

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Barbara Campagna

Barbara A. Campagna, FAIA, LEED AP BD+C was formerly the Graham Gund Architect of the National Trust in the Stewardship of Historic Sites office. She is currently a sustainability consultant to the National Trust and can be reached at bcampagna@bcampagna.com.

Rescuing an Icon, Part Three

Posted on: November 14th, 2007 by Barbara Campagna

 

A story of how a typical business trip turned into a tale of disaster management of national importance…

(Editor’s Note: Originally written in August for her personal blog, Barbara Campagna has agreed to share the story of her experience at the Farnsworth House in Plano, IL, as the floodwaters from the Fox River approached.)

Saturday, August 25th, 2007

The Farnsworth House, Plano, ILSaturday morning found us back at Farnsworth House with no further rains the night before. We took the boat out again and checked the house, emptied out the melting ice in the freezer, took more photos and then motored around the site to see how the trees and landscape had fared. There were many trees and branches floating in the water, fish swimming where only bushes and flowers should be and the pedestrian bridge from the Visitor Center was completely submerged. Still, we sighed happily that no water had breached the doors into the house. Whitney and I finished our day by writing down all we could think of that would be important for future disasters. And I drove back to Midway, happy to be going home and happier still that our precious resource had been saved - at least this time!!

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Barbara Campagna

Barbara A. Campagna, FAIA, LEED AP BD+C was formerly the Graham Gund Architect of the National Trust in the Stewardship of Historic Sites office. She is currently a sustainability consultant to the National Trust and can be reached at bcampagna@bcampagna.com.

Sun, Sand, Sustainability…And Sprawl Too!

Posted on: November 10th, 2007 by Barbara Campagna

 

Fort San Geronimo, Caribe Hilton, San JuanI just returned from 10 days of conferences – a week in San Juan for the APT Conference followed by 3 days at the Greenbuild Conference in Chicago. Both conferences energized me and made me so proud to be playing a professional role in the climate change discussion.

APT (the Association for Preservation Technology) is one of the National Trust’s primary partners in the Sustainable Preservation Coalition – a coalition of national organizations responsible for developing policies and best practices who have joined together to create national policy on the intersection of historic preservation and sustainable practices. This APT Conference was also my final conference as President of the organization, and I was thrilled to be the president at the most successful and highly attended conference ever in the organization’s 39 years. This was also our first off-shore conference which proved that “curb appeal” of conferences is as important if not more important than intellectual content!! We had 729 attendees, far more than the 200 we had originally planned as the breakeven number.

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Barbara Campagna

Barbara A. Campagna, FAIA, LEED AP BD+C was formerly the Graham Gund Architect of the National Trust in the Stewardship of Historic Sites office. She is currently a sustainability consultant to the National Trust and can be reached at bcampagna@bcampagna.com.

Rescuing an Icon, Part Two

Posted on: November 7th, 2007 by Barbara Campagna

 

A story of how a typical business trip turned into a tale of disaster management of national importance…

(Editor’s Note: Originally written in August for her personal blog, Barbara Campagna has agreed to share the story of her experience at the Farnsworth House in Plano, IL, as the floodwaters from the Fox River approached.)

August 24th, 2007

The Farnsworth House, Plano, ILWhitney and I had plans to drive out to Chicago for a 10:30 am meeting at the Landmarks Illinois office in the Monadnock Building with David Bahlman and Al Novickis, the architect ready to start work on the SAT grant for the house. I went down to a scrumptious breakfast to be told that Whitney had called at 7:30 am to say that the house had been completely surrounded by 4 feet of water during the night and I should get out there as soon as possible. I emailed my office and drove there to find that the Farnsworth House was peering above the water just barely, its 5 foot high stilts completely submerged and the water lapping at its front door. David Bahlman, President of Landmarks Illinois our co-steward partner at the house, drove down from Chicago, and he, Whitney and her boyfriend and I, tried to figure out how to get to the house to see if water had gotten in and/or to try to elevate the furniture and the rare Primavera wood panels.

We are fortunate that Whitney, the new site director who has only been in her job for 4 months, has lived in the community for 15 years and knows everyone. The water was too high and too dangerous to consider wading through. So we knew we needed to find a flat-bottomed boat. She called everyone she could think of including the Fire Department and no one had a boat. We feared we would be able to do nothing but watch as the house became submerged and possibly damaged as extensively as it had in 1996 when water rose 5' into the house.

... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Barbara Campagna

Barbara A. Campagna, FAIA, LEED AP BD+C was formerly the Graham Gund Architect of the National Trust in the Stewardship of Historic Sites office. She is currently a sustainability consultant to the National Trust and can be reached at bcampagna@bcampagna.com.

Rescuing an Icon, Part One

Posted on: November 1st, 2007 by Barbara Campagna

 

A story of how a typical business trip turned into a tale of disaster management of national importance...

(Editor's Note: Originally written in August for her personal blog, Barbara Campagna has agreed to share the story of her experience at the Farnsworth House in Plano, IL, as the floodwaters from the Fox River approached.)

Thursday, August 23rd, 2007

The Farnsworth House, Plano, ILMy day began like many others since I joined the National Trust - board a plane for another city, actually leave and arrive on time (not the norm), rent a car and soon find myself driving out of a city and across the plains and sprawl of middle America. This time briefly passing through Chicago en route to Plano, Illinois, the location of one of the world's most famous and influential modernist icons - Mies van der Rohe's vacation home for Edith Farnsworth. I arrived on time at 1pm for a day of project review with the new Site Director, Whitney French.

It was sunny and humid, not unlike my home in Washington, DC. A week of massive rains in the Midwest had left the Fox River, next to which the Farnsworth House lies, full and rising. Thirteen inches of rain left spots of minor flooding on the 7 acres adjacent to the house, mostly evident along the quarter mile trail from the Visitor Center to the House. These patches caused the tour groups to detour to the house via a ride along Fox River Drive to the rear garage entrance - not the best scenario because the preferred trail brings the visitor up and around the house, giving you that "ah ha" moment when you come around a copse of trees and suddenly see the white steel and glass cube that changed the way architecture is made. But a rear entrance is preferable to no entrance - people literally come from around the world to pay homage to one of the 20th century's grandest yet simplest architectural gestures.

... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Barbara Campagna

Barbara A. Campagna, FAIA, LEED AP BD+C was formerly the Graham Gund Architect of the National Trust in the Stewardship of Historic Sites office. She is currently a sustainability consultant to the National Trust and can be reached at bcampagna@bcampagna.com.