Green Ideas...

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Green Development - Spotlight on Modus Development

Green…with Envy
In a world focused on global warming and being “green” most home buyers today feel they need to shy away from luxurious homes, believing you must live in a tree fort with outdoor plumbing to save the environment. For some reason, the notion of living in a home that is well built and appointed with stylish features is merely for show and to save the environment, your home must be dull and generic. Well not anymore thanks to a new breed of visionary Developers like Ed Gorman of Phoenix-based Modus Development who believe when it comes to style versus substance, you can have your cake and eat too.

With a passion for homes edgy in design, Ed Gorman chucked the corporate world and decided to focus that passion on building just that, chic homes emphasizing luxury and style while using materials and design that blend into its surroundings.

“People should not only enjoy where they live, but be proud of it. In today’s world, most people are almost embarrassed to live in luxury because it might appear that they’re excessive and unwilling to sacrifice comfort to better the environment,” says Ed Gorman. “My vision is to build homes for people providing the lifestyle they desire and the “eco-friendliness” they want.”

While other builders were mass producing cookie-cutter “McMansions” by the score to the north, Ed took a different approach. To most developers central Phoenix offered old, run-down neighborhoods with limited space and higher costs, with cost being the bottom line for today’s homebuilder, literally. Higher investment in quality materials, fixtures and appliances means lower profitability. Simply put, the business model is minimize the luxury and maximize the profit. Let the buyer upgrade later!

Where the “one design fits all” approach blankets the shrinking northern desert, Modus saw a next generation urban home that minimizes the investment on the outside and focuses it where homeowners spend most of their time…inside. And where others saw higher costs, Modus saw opportunity…opportunity to replace old ignored and neglected lots, with edgy, modern homes close to work and play!

Modus’ business model is simple, take the expense normally budgeted for property, landscaping, swimming pools and massive amounts of unused square footage, build smaller, more functional homes and spare no expense when it comes to interior appointments, fixtures and appliances. The real trick is putting large home luxury into a small package.

With that in mind, Ed set out three years ago in search of the perfect site to put his signature on the urban landscape. Driving through an old Phoenix neighborhood one day, he stopped at the corner of 27th Street and Turney Avenue and the light bulb went off immediately. While most who passed by were probably in too much of a hurry to notice, Ed immediately saw unlimited potential. It would take a little coaxing and creativity, but it was the perfect place for Modus to start.

And what a start it was, too. What began as two old homes quickly transformed into eight luxuriously designed homes known as, “The Galleries at Turney.”

As luck would have it, Ed had recently crossed paths with a group of young Architects in Phoenix just getting started themselves, and like the property at Turney, Ed immediately saw great potential in their vision and creativity and quickly decided to bring [merz] project Architects in to design Galleries.

As you’d expect with all this talent and energy, the Modus/merz team did not disappoint. Like a start-up with a blank check, they designed each home with the homeowner in mind, rather than the shareholder, which is the real secret to Galleries success. Homes built with a focus on the lavish interiors, rich appointments, spectacular views and a location to die for, rather than unused square footage and acreage that only a Tax Assessor could love.

Modus believes that putting style and elegance into each home from the beginning is actually better for the homeowner in the long run. For example, how about kitchens with stainless steel Bosch appliances, HansGrohe and Durivit fixtures from Germany, Maistri la Cucina cabinets from Italy and CaesarStone® countertops, rather than nameless brands installed at wholesale prices that need replacement three years later?

How about details that accentuate each home like lavish stone floors and glass handrails that enhance rather than hinder one of several panoramic views of the Phoenix area? Modus even looks at basic exteriors with a creative eye. Tired of the same adobe style stucco home painted in one of three “southwesterny” colored earth tones like everyone else on the block? How about concrete panels with corrugated Zinc sheets to keep the heat out and the cool in? Well, that’s what drives Modus, keeping the cool in!

The focus of Galleries is making a smaller, urban location feel open and spacious in part by using the natural resources surrounding it, such as light and panoramic views that appear to be an endless extension of the interior.

As you enter Galleries from the spacious two-car garage you find yourself in a large, “Flex Room” with exposed masonry walls and polished concrete floors. With large glass doors opening into a private patio the room has enough light and space to serve multiple needs, like the perfect setting for a Home Theater or separate office space. Walking up the stairs, your attention is drawn to unique snapshots of the city captured through long, narrow windows at every step of the way. Reaching the top of the stairs, you find yourself in the main living area featuring a flowing modern kitchen built with hand crafted, rich colored cabinets, lavish fixtures, stone countertops and Limestone floors, extending into a large dining/living area. With floor-to-ceiling glass walls opening up to a private balcony, the room seems expansive, awash with natural light from every direction inward, and spectacular views outward towards Camelback mountain north or the Phoenix skyline to the south.

Another flight of stairs takes you up to the third level featuring a large Master Bedroom/Bathroom area as well as two additional rooms that can be used for whatever the homeowner desires, from entertainment to nursery to guest rooms.

Remember Ed’s vision for the neighborhood and its great potential? Well how about a home within walking distance of 24th Street & Camelback recently voted by Urban Land Institute as the #1 intersection in Arizona when it comes to the best areas to live. Based upon the traffic, cost-of-living and availability of shopping, dining, schools and parks, Galleries is mere blocks away from the best area in Phoenix to work and play.

And apparently Ed’s eye for talent is as sharp as it is property. Galleries has already received two Architect Institute of America (AIA) awards for design, and oh by the way, Galleries was also awarded the first US Green Builders Council’s Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) Certification for homes in Phoenix. Talk about having your cake and eating it too!

So the moral of this story is simple, investing a little imagination into the design, a Developer can create the perfect home and lifestyle, one that is both luxurious and eco-friendly leaving the competition, green…with envy!

1 comment:

Greame Smith said...

Our homes should be an inviolable place for us and for our planet-a place in harmony with the environment.