Build a Greener Future with Earth-Sheltered Homes


| 12/31/2014 8:46:00 AM


Without a doubt, it’s back to the basics for many of us. In spite of drones, iPhones and smart televisions, many individuals are craving record players, paper-bound books, board games and bicycles.

The same goes for homes. Some environmentalists and green construction and architecture specialists are digging in (literally) to earth-sheltered homes. These homes are new (but really old) types of dwellings that incorporate the natural landscape into their footprints.

Quick and Dirty

Three types of earth-sheltered homes exist for those wishing to tap into their inner caveman. The first involves piling earth up against exterior walls and even the roof of an existing building. In contrast to “earth berming,” builders carve out space underground for a subterranean building, leaving only the roof exposed.

Another approach involves re-purposing and relocating abandoned missile silos, tunnels, mine shafts, and concrete boxes to become underground living spaces. In a “cut and cover” process, a bulldozer or track-hoe digs a trench. A crane lowers boxes into the trench and then it is covered.



According to Underground-Homes, most earth-sheltered homes are set into a slope or a hillside. Since only one wall receives light, the dwelling should be built into the side of the hill facing the equator.



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