Michigan Design
Designer Spotlight
DIANE HANCOCK GOES PLATINUM – "Green" designer Diane Hancock creates her first LEED platinum-rated home
Diane Hancock

Architectural designer Diane Hancock of Diane Hancock Designs has turned her passion for design and concern for the environment into a successful practice that is well-known for projects that are beautiful, functional and help to preserve the environment.

MDC spent a few minutes with Diane to learn how her respect for the environment shapes her design work and to find out how her name has become synonymous with “green” design on local, national and international levels.

Diane, you are known for having a passion for all things "green". What sparked your initial interest in "green" design?
Years ago, I struck up a conversation with a stranger in a Florida bar. We realized we both had a common interest in green and I was hired to design his mountain home in Vail, Colorado. That was my first “green” home.

Living Room
Teak wood floors are heated by a geothermal closed-loop vertical system and long-lasting fluorescent, LED and halogen lighting is used. Most of the furniture and cabinetry was constructed locally for a smaller carbon footprint.
This bedroom includes furniture made from recycled wood scraps, reclaimed resin panels in the windows for privacy and an ecofuel fireplace that burns clean and requires no venting.

Since then, I have become LEED Certified – meaning that my designs provide energy sustainability and are environmentally friendly. I work with experts to recommend energy efficient household systems that conserve resources as well as save money each month by reducing the energy needed to power the home. Some have saved as much as 90% on their utilities.

A recent local project will be my first "platinum" rated design. This home is heated with a geo-thermal system that keeps the home at a constant temperature. Solar panels store electricity so that the home does not have to draw off the public power grid.

Do you recommend "green" design to all your clients?
I suggest to my clients that they pay attention to the details and be logical – expensive design is not always the best. The goal for each project is to have a minimum footprint and provide maximum design inside and out.

I often review plans and recommend the most energy efficient systems including: geo-thermal, solar and wind systems. Projects begin with a hand-drawn sketch that will become a series of computer generated 3-D images so that clients can truly visualize the plan.

There are many ways to “go green” and still create a beautiful, comfortable environment. Using recycled materials or products that are renewable is just the beginning.

With a prestigious dual degree in Architecture and Design, Diane has been the recipient of numerous
awards. During her 15 year career, she has designed homes in Michigan, Colorado, Florida, Nevada
and Costa Rica. To see more of Diane Hancock’s work, click here.



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