A lush, tree-filled lot guided many of architect Kelly D. Mitchell’s decisions when planning the Labron Residence in Dallas. Locating the open living/dining/kitchen area on the second level allows residents to take in the site’s prime scenery, while an oversized balcony offers even more expansive views and provides a bridge to the detached garage and art studio.

Designed as a modernist take on a treehouse, the home is crafted with simple lines, down-to-earth materials, and muted colors accented by unique touches such as stair treads from Enviroglas, made from recycled brown glass and porcelain from old toilets. A two-story window wall continues the indoor/outdoor theme and floods the front of the home with daylight.

Builder Artex Development retained the original home’s 1,440-square-foot foundation and recycled 95% of demolition waste, including reusing the original oak floors in the new house. “The waste diversion rate on this project is really incredible,” the judges raved.

With an eye toward water conservation, the team specified low-flow plumbing fixtures, permeable outdoor surfaces, native landscaping, and bioswales for stormwater runoff and retention. A rainwater harvesting system from Tierra Designs comprises two above-ground 2,500-gallon tanks that collect and hold water for irrigation and clothes washing.

The kitchen cabinets were constructed locally with formaldehyde-free MDF and FSC-certified EchoWood engineered veneer, which uses common wood fiber to create the look of exotic wood such as zebrawood or macassar.

Windows: Thermal Windows

/ Siding: James Hardie / Decking: East Teak / Insulation: Johns Manville / Appliances: KitchenAid; Bosch (washer & dryer) / Countertops: Silestone / Cabinetry: 3L Designs / Kitchen Faucets: KWC / Bath Faucets: Kohler / Toilets: Duravit / Flooring: Teragren / Stair Treads: Enviroglas / Paint: Sherwin-Williams / Interior Lighting: Lightolier / HVAC: Trane

Click here to see all 2010 EHDA winners.