I am very sad to report that Michelle Kaufmann Designs is closing, due in part to the credit crisis and the closing of factories used to manufacture MKD homes. The green prefab firm, located in Oakland, CA, designed homes guaranteed to achieve either gold or platinum LEED ratings, the two highest ratings from the US Green Building Council. Homes such as the Glidehouse and mkLotus won MKD international acclaim, and were proof that prefab and green were a natural fit.
Kaufmann has been working with her clients -- some with houses in construction, others earlier in the design process -- to put them in a position to build their projects with other firms, if they choose. She said she has been in preliminary talks with large home-building companies that may be interested in producing her designs or working with her as a consultant.
While I've been saddened by a number of stories in the real estate and architecture world lately, this one definitely hits me the hardest. Michelle Kaufmann is truly an inspiration, and I wish her the best of luck in her next, undoubtedly impressive project in the world of architecture and sustainable living.