Thorntree Commons at Suttons Bay
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Green Building Professionals

1. Introduction
2. Green Architects & Designers
3. Green Builders
4. Other Businesses


There have been a number of building professionals who have expressed interest in the uniqueness of Thorntree, have assured familiarity with our "green" build requirements, have professed to have the professional skills to serve Thorntree clients well, and have conveyed the kind of positive energy for the goals of Thorntree that we expect. I am pleased to provide their names below for consideration.

This list is neither exclusive nor preferential; my ability to research every business's background is limited. I do have considerably more personal knowledge of some of these professionals and will gladly share my thoughts and opinions with respect to them. But in the final analysis, the decision is for each Thorntree member to make. In all cases the future homeowner should do the research, ask good "green" questions, and take advantage of professional portfolio examples that demonstrate sustainable design and build practices.

We take our architectural review processes very seriously. Many visitors to this site will be familiar with the term "green-washing," which describes the practice of using "green" as a marketing tool with little or no meaningful integration of truly sustainable materials or practices. We have been and will continue to be vigilant in ensuring that "green-washing" never occurs at Thorntree Commons. Toward this end, in addition to the building guidelines outlined in the Master Deed, we will provide each member with a green manual that can be of real value in formulating the questions that each member should be asking of his or her potential designer and builder.

On a final note, putting creativity to work and building a thoughtful and sustainable home is also a lot of fun. If you'll allow a little hyperbole, I think building a green home is as close as one can get to building a Perpetual Motion Machine. By working with and not against the laws of nature, I will have the joy and satisfaction of creating a home that keeps running and running and paying back in every respect.

Enjoy the process,
-David Bahle

Green Architects & Designers

David T. Hanawalt, AIA

In his own words: "...there are a multiplicity of approaches to the creation of architecture. This reality has yielded on one hand a richness of creations through history and around the world through all the culture of humanity. But this multiplicity has also yielded a vast variety of garbage, waste and inappropriate structures over our landscapes through a combination of laziness, greed and narrow mindedness. In the face of such nefarious warriors, our best method and weapon as architects is to fight back with architecture that stands as example, by contrast."
Suttons Bay Depot, P.O. Box 262, Suttons Bay, MI
(231) 271-4132

Image Design, LLC

Image Design, LLC is a national award winning residential design firm, located in East Grand Rapids Michigan. We specialize in designing energy-efficient, environmentally friendly, sustainable, or green homes, with the minimum of LEED for Homes and ENERGY STAR certification, as well as Lifetime Design and Not So Big House principles.

  • Designer of the "2007 & 2008 Michigan Energy Fair Show House"
  • Recipient of the Exemplary Project 2007 Award from the GLREA
  • Designer of West Michigan's first LEED for Homes "Platinum" project

"All of man's works intrude upon nature - It is man's obligation to intrude harmoniously."

-Alden B. Dow, c. 1958
2722 Richards Dr. SE, East Grand Rapids, MI
(616) 974-0088

j vandermolen | architect inc.
2026 Joan Ave. NE, Grand Rapids, MI
(616) 648-5266

Clark Walter Sirrine Architects

From conception to completion and occupancy, Clark Walter Sirrine Architects have been providing high quality design and architectural services- creatively meeting the building needs of our clients.
513 South Union, Traverse City, MI
(231) 946-3627

Allegretti Architects Inc

The architecture of Allegretti Architects is devoted to and inspired by Nature and its patterns, a so-called "organic architecture". The firm is an ardent proponent of environmentalism and believes man should live in harmony with Nature: "Our structures take advantage of natural forces, such as solar energy, while being cost-effective to build and operate."
500 Main Street, St. Joseph, MI
(269) 983-1100

Sunstructures Architects

201 E. Liberty St, Suite 1, Ann Arbor, MI
(734) 769-9784

Steenwyk Architects

35 Lafayette Ave Ne, Grand Rapids, MI
(616) 459-4228

Sears Architects
(616) 336-8495

Jeffrey Klum, Architect

Jeffrey Klum will often take on the responsibility of building the homes he designs. Jeffrey takes pride in offering his clients a little something extra, that special flair that makes his work stand out.
2176 Wealthy Street #2, East Grand Rapids, MI
(616) 949-6881

Architectural Resource

Architectural Resource endeavors to incorporate products, materials and construction methods which provide for healthful and energy conserving living environments.
1220 Jewett, Suite C, Ann Arbor, MI
(734) 769-9784

Architectural Elements of Michigan

Architectural Elements is a custom woodworking & design studio. Our cabinetry is hand crafted by true artists and craftsmen in our state of the art facility in Traverse City. We have a design staff on hand to make your project unique and entirely your own. We believe that the process is as important as the final product. With that in mind, we take the time to understand your lifestyle and your needs. We believe that it is our responsibility to honor the environment we live and work in. We have made a commitment to researching and utilizing green materials and techniques. In short, we do our homework.
13975 South Robinson Road, Traverse City, MI
(231) 995-9700

Green Builders

Gribi Builders, Inc.

For over 26 years Gribi has been building the finest custom homes in Northwest Michigan.
13163 Campbell Road, Kewadin, MI
(231) 264-5545

Steinorth Fine Homes

Steinorth Fine Homes is a leading design build company located in Northern Michigan since 1975, known for being at the forefront of the green building movement in the region and for their distinctive custom design work.

"Comfort has nothing to do with size. Comfort in homes is attained by tailoring our houses to fit the way we really live." Sarah Susanka, AIA

Integrated Architecture

IA believes that Green design is no longer a luxury, it is a mandate. LEED certified staff regularly reviews their projects, maximizing Green design opportunities.
4090 Lake Drive SE, Grand Rapids, MI
330 Miller Avenue, Ann Arbor, MI

Bazzani Associates

Sustainable building has been Bazzani's commitment for every project since it was founded in 1983. Bazzani builds for the triple bottom line: Economic Viability, Social Responsibility, and Environmental Stewardship. Our sustainable building utilizes carefully planned building practices that consider the economy, the environment and the future of the people who live there. Our commitment to the future ultimately costs our clients less and provides greater value. It's not only good for the environment... It's good for business.
959 Wealthy Street SE, Grand Rapids, MI
(616) 774-2002

Dale Boone Construction

Thorntree Commons is a community with our future in mind, and we look forward to building energy-efficient homes in Suttons Bay and preserving our heritage. Dale Boone Construction has been in business for 14 years, with more than 20 years experience.

  • Custom Built Homes
  • Efficient
  • Hands-On Construction Company

"I look forward to the opportunity to be involved in a community of the future... today."
P.O. Box 308, Suttons Bay, MI
(231) 271-3582

Other Businesses

Gosling Czubak Engineering Sciences

Providing civil and environmental engineering, land surveying, construction testing, drilling, landscape architecture, and community planning services in Michigan and midwestern states since 1957.
1280 Business Park Drive, Traverse City, MI
(231) 946-9191

Safford and Baker, PLLC

Safford & Baker, PLLC is a business and commercial law firm of six attorneys, located in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, serving are small- and medium-sized businesses and individuals seeking legal advice with regard to both business and personal concerns.
40900 Woodward Avenue, Suite 275, Bloomfield Hills, MI
(248) 646-9100

Eco Building Products

Eco Building Products is a Green Building Product and Renewable Energy System supplier in Northern Michigan. Their high performing products are energy efficient, energy generating, natural resource sensible, durable, cost-effective and healthy for the environment and you.
8122 Barney Road, Traverse City, MI
(231) 932-9104