Leed Certification
Education and Awareness

Mason Residence


La Rita Mason


Amarillo, TX

LEED Consultant:

Chip Henderson



Green Rater:

Project Goal:

La Rita Mason wanted her new home to be designed and built for energy efficiency and sustainable living with universal accessibility. The challenge was maintaining a character and style appropriate for a historic neighborhood listed on the National Registry of Historic Places. The Wolflin neighborhood in Amarillo, Texas is an upscale residential area with historic mansions, brick streets and stately trees.


The existing 1929 bungalow style home simply could not be retrofitted to meet the new requirements for energy efficiency or handicapped accessibility. The existing structure was demolished and the new home was constructed on the same basic footprint to retain the majority of the existing trees. Green features were not limited to the homes interior. Special features in the yard included a Trex Deck made of recycled plastic grocery bags and sawdust, a rough cedar Bar-B-Que nook, a 360º water feature, dry streambed that takes storm run-off water into a custom designed Rain Garden and grass permeable pavers that recycle water and give a "yard appearance" to the side yard. Handicapped ramps designed to look like bridges over the dry streambed allowed for universal accessibility to the garage and driveway.

Throughout the house and yard, sensory stimulation was accomplished by varied textures and colors. A set of doors of sufficient width to allow for a hospital bed to be moved out on the deck and an elevator were installed for accessibility. The kitchen included several features to make it wheelchair friendly without an institutional feel. These adaptations included a raised dishwasher, a lowered microwave (for easier access for children or a person in a wheelchair while reducing the risk of pulling hot foods down onto oneself), cabinets with pull-out drawers that convert to work areas, and a raised washer and dryer that provides easy access from a wheelchair. This fully automated “Smart Home” achieved LEED Silver certification by setting a vision for independent living that included a healthy indoor environment, lower utility costs and features that facilitate “aging-in-place.”

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