Museum of Science and Industry – Smart Home
During its 75th anniversary year, the Museum of Science and Industry built a fully-functioning, three-story modular sustainable home right in the Museum’s backyard, paving the way for sustainable innovation and modern living. The 2,500 square-foot home showcases the many ways people can make eco-friendly living a part of their everyday.
“In the Smart Home, Museum guests will be able to view the latest innovations in reusable resources, smart energy consumption, and clean, healthy-living environments in a modern, elegant and realistic setting,” said Anne Rashford, the Museum’s director of temporary exhibits.
As part of the project, engineers from EEA assisted in the design of sustainable practices on the home’s exterior. Outside the home, beautiful native landscaping is maintained by the University of Illinois Extension. Guests also explore the possibilities of a sustainable vegetable garden, rain gardens, bioswales, and other vegetation native to the Chicago region. A rooftop garden not only acts as a source of cooling in the hot summer months, but will also insulate in the winter. This rooftop garden absorbs precipitation, leading to less stormwater runoff. Any leftover runoff, however, is then collected and reused as an irrigation source for other vegetation.
A unique learning opportunity for Chicagoland residents, the Smart Home serves as a testament to the many sustainable options available to homeowners today.