From an article by Julie Lawrence at

Back in spring 2008, Pragmatic Construction, a Milwaukee-based green construction company aimed at advancing the principles of sustainable development within the urban environment, was knee-deep in a series of development projects but was still planning its path for a greener future in Milwaukee.

Co-founder Steve Servais and his crew were just laying out the plans for two single-family homes in Riverwest that were slated to be among the state’s first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified platinum homes. . . .

LEED-certified buildings are designed to lower operating costs and increase asset value, reduce waste sent to landfills, conserve energy and water, be healthier and safer for occupants and reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions.

Two years later, the side-by-side sustainable homes at 702 and 708 E. Hadley St. are complete and now on the market. Servais says his company has really pushed sustainable building to the limit.

The house sizes are modest; 1,200 and 1,300 square feet, respectively. But the environmental impact is huge. Some of the many green features include passive solar heating, passive cooling, 96 percent energy-efficient forced-air backup HVAC, bio-based sprayfoam roof insulation, triple-pane windows, tankless hot water, reclaimed hardwood flooring, reclaimed doors, steel, fiber-cement and cedar siding, stained concrete flooring, no-VOC paints and finishes, dual-flush toilets and low-flow fixtures, in-floor radiant heat and energy recovery ventilators.

And it doesn’t stop indoors. Outside they’ve implemented rain barrels, a shared rain-garden, pervious paving surfaces, steel roofing, recycled plastic roofing, a 2.1KW PV Array (solar electric), and two flat-panel solar hot water arrays.