Building With the Future in Mind Since 1955

You can see the Rastra blocks in full view here, prior to being covered by the pre-colored stucco finish.

Our challenge in 2004 was to build our greenest home to date while impacting as few trees as possible.  The new home site was an infill lot and the optimal building site was the former rear lawn of the seller’s home.  Surrounding this idealic building footprint were the live Christmas trees the seller had planted during their three decades of  living there!  For sure…. we wanted to remove as few of these trees as possible!

So we designed and built a new home that is surrounded by some pretty large trees.  Initial observers don’t understand that the house can be so young if the surrounding trees are so old!

Our sensitivity to the site allowed us to perform this magic!

Green aspects include:

Lifetime-warranty composition roofing

Unvented, conditioned crawlspace (we believe this may have been Bellingham’s first)

Blown-in cellulose insulation

Rastra exterior walls (an insulated concrete form (ICF) product made from 85% post-consumer content polystyrene)

Pre-colored exterior stucco atop the Rastra so that the exterior need not be re-painted

On-demand water heater

The subfloor (T&G fir car decking) doubles as the finish flooring (achieving a sustainable building practice called ‘dematerialization’; no additional finished flooring needs to be added atop the subfloor) with no baseboard trim installed as well

FSC-certified framing and sheathing

Salvaged lumber from Duluth Lumber

Used building materials from the RE Store

Low-VOC paints

Xeriscaping (native planting that requires little or no fertilizer, watering, herbicides and pesticides) and rain garden

This home was featured in Northwest Business Monthly and you can see more of the exterior landscaping by clicking on the following link: Outdoor environment incorporating a permaculture design.

The media attention didn’t end there.  Here ‘s a shot of Cindi being interviewed for our local TV channel 10 just prior to pouring the cores in the Rastra block walls.


  • Ridgeway exterior
  • Ridgeway kitchen
  • Ridgeway open shelves
  • Ridgeway shower
  • Ridgeway stairs
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