US Green Building Council - Ohio Chapter - Southwest Ohio Region

Green Living Member Circle

Mission: To provide education on sustainability in everyday tasks by promoting household environmentally sound practices targeting LEED, Energy Star, home gardening, existing building reuse, historical preservation, renewable home energy and sustainable remodeling.

Member Circle Info: Chair: Chuck Lohre, meetings shared with Residential Green Building Member Circle. Learn more at

Green Home Tours: No charge for Region members (you can bring a guest), join the Region. You have to register a free account with the USGBC before you can become a Southwest Ohio Region member. If you don’t have a national USGBC registered account, go to and click on “Sign In” in the upper right. A window will come up, click on the “Don’t have an account? Create one.” Once you register your free account, you should be able to pay your dues for the “Cincinnati Chapter”. You don’t have to register as a USGBC business. Non-members are asked to register and donate $15 per person at the door. Contact Chair Chuck Lohre to register for the tours or be introduced to the owners,, 513-260-9025. Tours are sponsored by The Sustainable Partnership of Cincinnati, a group of businesses offering sustainable products and services to create sustainable homes and offices. Learn more at

Cincinnati Green Marketing Green Home Tour
September 17, 2016; 10 am till Noon: Whitney Residence, Anderson, OH – A “Quonset Roof” style barn conversion with geo-thermal and radiant heat. Learn more from Nancy Kibbee’s article in “Natural Interiors.” House Trends’ articles: “Remodeling ideas create a barn re-born” and “Home remodel gives new life to barn.” And here’s a link to Brent Colman’s Article for Channel 9. We’re looking for a Chapter member to be the “House Captain” of this tour. You just need to arrive early with the coffee and pastries, introduce the Chapter and the homeowner.

Rauh House
October 8, 2016; 10 am till Noon: Rauh Residence, Woodlawn, OH – John Becker designed residence, considered the first international style home in the region. Built 1938. Completely restored in 2013 by the Cincinnati Preservation Association to it’s original plan and upgraded with the latest energy efficiency methods including geo-thermal, added insulation and high performance glazing. Learn more.  We’re looking for a Chapter member to be the “House Captain” of this tour. You just need to arrive early with the coffee and pastries, introduce the Chapter and the homeowner.

November 19, 2016; 10 am till Noon: Walters Residence, East Walnut Hills – 
Samuel Hannaford Home restoration and LEED Certified. Learn more, photo from Brent Coleman’s article for Channel 9. Also a Cincinnati Refined post, “The J.H. Rhodes House in Walnut Hills is one of the most beautiful examples of Romanesque Revival architecture in Cincinnati. From the foyer’s arched double doors to the dining room’s coffered ceiling, everything looks perfectly preserved from the days when the house was built, by none other than famed architect Samuel Hannaford a century ago.” We’re looking for a Chapter member to be the “House Captain” of this tour. You just need to arrive early with the coffee and pastries, introduce the Chapter and the homeowner.

2017 Tours
• Jan 15, 2017, 10 am till Noon, - Quinlivan Residence, Mt. Lookout, Cincinnati. A LEED Gold home rebuilt on the site of their homestead for not much more than a major renovation and now they have 1/3rd more space but 1/3rd the HVAC cost.
• Feb 18, 2017, 10 am till Noon, – Theobald Residence, Covington, KY. Builder and owner of the first private container home in the region. Two shipping containers side-by side will be renovated off site with recycled materials featuring contemporary design for an efficient, flexible and environmentally conscious dwelling.
• Mar, 18 2017, 10 am till Noon, – McMahon Residence, Hyde Park, Cincinnati. Many energy efficiency measures added to improve a traditional bungalow.
• Apr 15, 2017, 10 am till Noon, – Sandy Hamilton’s Green Addition in Northside, Cincinnati, designed by Edward Wright, our March 2015 host.
• Apr 29, 2017, Earnshaw Ecohouse, Mt. Auburn, This conscious community home’s goal is to be off the grid in 2017. You’ll learn some simple but very effective ways to limit energy use as well as reduce water consumption and eliminate waste. Their garden is an example of permaculture principals. All within a very low budget.  Learn more.
• May 20, 2017, 10 am till Noon, – Morales Luginbill Residence, Mt. Adams, possible LEED Platinum home with smaller footprint for a family.
• Sep 16, 2017, 10 am till Noon, – Melink Residence, Milford, OH. Steve Melink is the owner of Melink Corp. Net-Zero manufacturing facility.
• Oct 21, 2017, 10 am till Noon, - Yankie Residence, Maderia, OH, possible LEED Platinum renovation. Paul Yankie of Green Building Consulting owner and house captain.
• Nov 18, 2017, 10 am till Noon, – TBD.
2018 Tours
• May 2018 – Warminski Residence, Newport, KY, 1907 cottage that should have it’s solar panels installed by then. Margo also plans to show off her extensive insulation and air sealing done by the Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance. As well has her grey water downstairs toilet which ads a lavatory to the small room.
• Warner Residence – New construction to be LEED certified home in Oakley
• Fickas Residence – Nancy comes from a long history of sustainable homes, “My grandfather built has entire house from shipping pallets for his family of 9. He worked at a door manufacturer and brought home the scrape wood to complete the house and build the furniture. My father worked there to and did the same thing to build my Mother a new kitchen.
Possible Future Tours:
• Carl Strauss designed home in Avondale, renovated to LEED Silver.
• Mills Residence in Clifton, a pioneer in radiant heating in 1950, this home has been preserved by owner Scott Knox.
• Woeste/Mahle Residence, OTR
• Elm St. renovation to LEED Certification. Steve Hampton of GreenBau house captain and architect.
• Hammer Residence on Republic St. in OTR.
• Chappel-Dick Residence, Bluffton, OH, LEED Platinum, registered Monarch Waystation. Andy Chappell-Dick, Design/Builder. Learn more.
 LEED Gold home in Northside with solar, geothermal and a xeriscaped yard
• Muroe Stengel Residence in Burlington, KY; Radient heating, organic garden, chickens, bee hives and ceramic kiln.
• Skype interview with Paul Girard, president of ATA Pop Homes in Yukon, Canada. He will give us a tour of his typical 825 sq ft kit home with R 70 attic, R 42 walls and R 44 floor insulation. Price $108, 445.

Past Tours:

Bacher Residence480x200
May 21, 2016; 10 am till Noon: Bacher Residence, Norwood, Ohio
 – 990 sqft  home with an organic garden. 1940s construction of poured concrete offers excellent air sealing. Since convincing her mom to set-up a recycling center in their home as a young child, Stephanie Bacher has had a passion for recycling, conservation and learning and teaching the facts. At the tour she’ll share her knowledge of recycling, household items and health and beauty aids that perform beautifully but don’t harm the environment. Learn more at Stephanie’s Facebook page “Gradually Going Green.”  And her web page Here’s a blog post about the tour.

Holzhauer Residence USGBC Green Home Tours
April 16, 2016; 10 am till Noon: Holzhauser Residence, OTR Downtown Cincinnati
Andy Holzhauser and Janice Liebenberg and daughter Olivia moved in six months ago to their redeveloped townhome on Elm near Washington Park. Their home has 3 beds, 2.5 baths with a study as well as an apartment below it. It was a 5-year project, culminating with the conversion of a 120 year-old home that had historically been used for tenement housing, and then vacant for the last decade.  The home hopefully will be rated LEED Platinum, the highest designation for sustainable development. Andy and Janice want it to be considered a demonstration project to prove that our community’s oldest buildings can be converted to a new form that minimizes energy use through efficiency and solar, and maximizes clean air and healthy living.  As Olivia has just turned 2 years old, Andy and Janice plan to join the growing contingent of OTR residents that choose to raise their family in the neighborhood.  Andy and Janice both walk to work and are a 1-car family. The Enquirer posted a few photos from the OTR Future Leaders Holiday Home Tour. Sanyog Rathod was House Captain.

March 19, 2016; 10 am till Noon: Alscher Hancock Residence in Clifton -
This new construction LEED Platinum home is designed for “aging in place” with “minimal utility bills.” The double-butterfly roof conceals over 5,000 watts of solar photovoltaic capacity, and the small front yard conceals three 250-foot geothermal wells serving the 4-ton system that not only heats and cools the house but provides all of its hot water as a natural by-product. Learn more at the home’s blog. Sanyog Rathod, House Captain.

February 20, 2016; 10 am till Noon: Labbe Residence in Montgomery, OH -
LEED Silver, Architect owned home which will show off its passive solar design in February. Learn more at Stephanie Labbe’s site page on the home.  The home was featured in “Being Green in Cincinnati, Page 50. David Oen was House Captain.

Moothart Residence
January 16, 2016; 10 am till Noon: Spicknall Moothart Residence – Northside, Cincinnati. LEED Gold. This modern home design has a number of notable sustainable design features, utilizing corrugated metal, fiber cement panels, and cedar on the exterior. Passive solar orientation was implemented in the design. The walls and roof were constructed of structural insulation panels (SIPs) which make the house extremely well insulated and quiet. There is a large south facing white metal roof. It is orientated for future solar panels/home battery installation. Learn more.

Shotgun Row Covington, KY

November 14, 2015, 10 am till Noon, Center for Great Neighborhoods’ Shotgun Row, Covington, KY. Bradley Cooper’s Tiny Home Project “Start Small” in OTR ( Learn more. ) will not be ready for a tour in November so we are going to tour the best example of existing of tiny homes in Greater Cincinnati. It is the Covington, KY Center for Great Neighborhoods’ Shotgun Row restoration of five vacant and rundown shotgun houses.
“First phase of $600K artist homes project unveiled,” CBC, Jan 23, 2014 (photos above from article)
“Westside’s Redevelopment Continues with More Projects by Center for Great Neighborhoods,” RCN, Sep 3, 2014
“Covington Project Wins State Preservation Award,” RCN, May 22, 2015

Lohre LEED Platinum-17large200x480

November 1, 2015, 1 pm till 3 pm, Over-The-Rhine Condo transformed into LEED Platinum. Meet Architect Martha Schickel Dorff and resident Chuck Lohre who did the LEED renovations and documentation. Features include a renewable energy pellet stove, 91% Energy Star plug loads, 31% water savings and 100% sustainable sites credits. Learn more.


October 3, 2015, 10 am till Noon, Fischer ResidenceEnergy efficient and 20-26 panel PV solar electric system Fischer Residence in Milford. Learn more at the Brent Coleman article published by WCPO Channel 9.

Green Home

September 12, 2015, 10 am till Noon, Sun Sugar Farms, Fritz Residence, Verona, Kentucky home and farm, Sun Sugar Farms  supplies edamame and other vegetables to local restaurants. Learn more.

Columbia Tusculum Residence

July 25, 2015, 10 am till Noon, Nietch Residence, Columbia Tusculum Residence/Yoga Studio - This home addition and remodel was a labor of love for the owners, a yoga instructor and US EPA employee. From design through construction, every detail was chosen to reinforce their mantra of living lightly. The home’s heating and cooling is supplemented with a solar thermal powered radiant floor heating system. Solar PV was installed to offset their energy bills. A 2,500 gallon tank captures and stores the rain water from the entire roof. The water will be recycled for irrigation and eventually toilet flushing. Learn more from Houzz.

Green Building Consuting Cincinnati

May 16, 2015, 10 am till Noon, Boulter ResidenceA Frank Lloyd Wright designed home, in Clifton, may never reach LEED Certification but learns a lot by trying. This is your Chair, Chuck Lohre’s residence and the inspiration for his interest in sustainability. Videos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8. PhotosLearn more. Cincinnati Enquirer article by Carrie Blackmore Smith.

April 25, 2015, 9 to 11 am, Imago for the Earth Community,, in Price Hill. Imago is a grassroots, environmental education organization. For over 30 years Imago has been modeling and educating about living in concert with the natural world, both animate and inanimate, human and non.

April 25, 2015, 9 to 11 am, Imago For The Earth Community in Price Hill. Imago is a grassroots, environmental education organization. For over 30 years Imago has been modeling and educating about living in concert with the natural world, both animate and inanimate, human and non. Learn more.

March, 2015 tentative, the nutter home is the most energy efficient home we have ever visited. Their first year energy cost were about $200! The home also has the only rainwater toilet flush system we have seen.

March 21, 2015, 10 am till Noon, Nutter ResidenceMt. Carmel, OH, is the most energy efficient home we have  visited. Their first year energy cost was about $200! The home also has the only rainwater toilet flush system we have seen. Learn more at the house blog. Cincinnati Magazine article article April 2006. Cincinnati Magazine article March 2008. Insul-Deck insulated concrete floor form application story. Environmental Design and Construction Excellence in Design Award 2008.

This highly energy efficient home by Architect Edward Wright was suggested by Heather Kinsman. We're looking forward to learning more.

March 7, 2015, 10 am till Noon, Wright Residence, this highly energy efficient home achieved LEED Gold. Owner Architect Edward Wright will lead the tour. Learn more. Cincinnati Enquirer article by Carrie Blackmore Smith.

Green Homes in Cincinnati

January 17, 2015, 10 am till Noon, Gaitan Residence, Over-The-Rhine home has applied for the City of Cincinnati U.S. Green Building Council Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design tax abatement. They should save about $40,000 over the five year period of the tax savings, easily paying for the approximate $6,000 in higher performance materials, systems and LEED fees. Learn more. WCPO article by Brent Coleman.

LEED for Homes Cincinnati
November 8, 2014, 10 am till Noon, Kinsman Residence is a LEED Silver home that’s boiler free. Heating and natural cooling from passive and thermal solar sources. The home is located in the Cincinnati neighborhood of Northside. Learn more.