This is the first installment in a four-part series of green material recommendations. This series is intended to provide information on selecting the correct green material for a project, and avoiding common products whose environmentally sustainable features are overstated or nonexistent. In selecting a flooring product, we must first consider the function of the floor in question. Is it residential, or commercial? Is it in a high-traffic area, where durability is more important, or is it in a lesser-used room? Rapidly renewable materials, such as cork flooring, are an excellent green option, but they tend to be less durable. Cork floor

2013 marks the fourth year that Charles Krekelberg, project manager, designer, master planner, and educator, has inspired students from across the globe through a unique and intensive course dedicated to affecting positive change in our world’s built environment. The Institute of Architecture, designed by Krekelberg and taught on Duke University’s West Campus, is a two-week exploration of sustainable architecture with an emphasis on creative design, scientific advances, useful technologies, and realization of truly innovative solutions. Through hands-on activities and three-dimensional computer modeling, students transform their ideas into actual architectural projects, which integrate high-performance systems and space planning on a site