From: Paul Schaefer, ENN
Published December 5, 2007 12:00 PM

Bissfield Michigan Home, Model of Sustainability, Earns LEEDS Platinum

Blissfield, Michigan - Michigan’s first platinum-level Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) award has been given to “Burnside’s Inn,” a home designed by Riverbend Timber Framing, Blissfield, and built by Robert Burnside’s Fireside Home Construction, Dexter.

The LEED Green Building Rating System™, the nationally accepted benchmark for high-performance green buildings, bases its certifications on sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.  The platinum award is its highest level of recognition.

“Burnside’s Inn” met the certification’s highest standards using Riverbend’s custom timber frame, along with Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) and an Advantage™ Insulated Concrete Form foundation (ICF) from its sister company, Insulspan.  In addition to these standard Riverbend energy-saving elements, Burnside incorporated a geo-thermal heating and cooling system, and solar panels tied into the local power grid. 



“I sell electricity back to them,” Burnside said.\

The 4,000 square-foot home will cost an estimated $520 per year for heating, cooling and hot water. 

The 10-year-old Fireside Home Construction Company is a preferred builder for Connie Seiser, authorized Riverbend representative, and has completed two award winning timber frame projects in the Dexter area.  Burnside says his interest in energy-efficient building goes back to the company’s beginnings.

“When I started in 1996 I just wanted to save energy,” he said. “It evolved into a green-building philosophy, and a passion.  Now it’s all we do.” 

Fireside Home Construction is on-line at Seiser can be contacted via .

Riverbend Timber Framing, Blissfield, Mich., is one of the leading timber frame design and manufacturing companies in North America, creating environmentally friendly custom timber frame homes, vacation homes and commercial buildings since 1979.  Visit Riverbend on-line at


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