This spring break a couple UM FLAT residents left on an adventure for lush, green conditions in Oregon’s beautiful Willamette Valley. At Eugene’s University of Oregon, those two FLATmates encountered a handful of empowered and sustainability-minded students. The University of Oregon’s Center for the Advancement of Sustainable Living (CASL), is a house that strives to inspire sustainable living practices through demonstration and experiental learning.
The UM FLAT’s founder made a connection with CASL years ago and even used CASL as a model for how a sustainable demonstration house could function. This spring, FLAT residents reconnected with these Oregon demonstrators while touring their project during one of CASL’s weekly workdays. The CASL project, though inspired by similar ideas as the UM FLAT, has its own unique approach to experiental learning.
The University of Oregon offers a handful of classes through its architecture program to allow students to fulfill an advanced architecture elective. Students, through hands-on work at CASL, research and learn about LEED design and passive-house building techniques. Eventually, three directors will move into CASL and lead tours, maintain the grounds, and provide demonstrations of sustainable living.
Acknowledging places like CASL and exchanging lessons and information with University of Oregon students is an exciting prospect for FLAT residents. Keeping an open dialogue with entities with similar aspirations allow us to expand and improve on our projects while also sharing our own ideas and experiences. Cheers to sustainable demonstration house camaraderie!