Most of the time when we hear about the marriage of modern design and sustainable construction, it’s heralding a large new office building or apartment tower. But Chad Ludeman of Postgreen Homes is intent on bringing those elements to rowhouse living.
Take the facade of Postgreen’s latest project, Duplexcellence II, made of sturdy steel with energy-saving cooktops, LED lights and double-the-industry-standard insulation. Even consumers who aren’t excited about green construction are thrilled to see how much lower their utility bills are. Ludeman says, “We’re building quite a different product than everyone else.”
Ludeman founded the company in 2008 after jobs in engineering and marketing, and it’s been steadily growing since, and he puts effort toward growing Postgreen’s name recognition. “For most developers, each project is a new brand,” he says, “and nobody really knows who’s behind it. But being really open and transparent about who we are and what we’re about has been a goal since day one.”
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Today he works with his wife, a childhood friend and a construction team. “We don’t need to be the biggest, richest developers out there,” he says. “We want to do something that we are proud to put our name on.”
The latest project: Duplexcellence II
Postgreen has a few projects in the works right now, but Ludeman is most excited about Duplexcellence II, now almost complete, near the El’s Girard stop.
A follow-up to a similar project across the street, it contains four duplex units stacked two by two. The bottom units have gardens, and the top ones sport roof decks, all behind that surprisingly sexy reclaimed-wood facade.
A particular point of pride for Ludeman is how economically the design uses space, allowing more families to live on the lot than would in a more traditional townhome.
Also in the works is Awesometown in Fishtown: Fourteen modern townhomes, four of which are designated for moderate-income families through a partnership with New Kensington Community Development Corporation (NKCDC) and Ludeman’s willingness to spare some profits to deliver affordable housing to qualified buyers.