PHOTOS: Impressive Property Rains Down with Green Water Tech

PHOTOS: Impressive Property Rains Down with Green Water Tech


“It’s no cottage!” laughs Finbarr Collins, a builder who adds that this is his first time constructing a project so abundant in technology. “[Technology] presents a perfect opportunity when you’re building new.”

With a price tag of $4.4 million, the builder–of Finbarr Collins Construction–had never worked on a property as large as the one that currently sits at the address of 437 Duncan Street in San Francisco’s Noe Valley neighborhood.

Joining forces with Craig Scott of IwamotoScott Architecture, the duo worked together through a process that—from entitlement to opening—took a total of four years to complete. The architect and builder collaborated on finding the best way to utilize the space and design for the property’s generous offering of technology.

The front facade of 437 Duncan.
The front facade of 437 Duncan.

“We had to figure out what was best for the technology without having it be too dominant but rather immersive and in the background,” says Scott.

Scroll down for a photo tour below, featuring all the technology of the home, plus a video tour.

Embracing Mother Nature

The key to 437 Duncan’s design and overall success is a reliance on the natural powers of the world.

The home embraces natural light, elegantly blends the outdoor spaces with interior and tops the roof with a Luminalt solar system of high performance SunPower panels.

However, what’s most fascinating is the property’s use of additional green features such as multi-zoned radiant heat, graywater distribution system and a 6,000-gallon storm water collection system.

The water-based technologies were installed by Bill Wilson, an expert in environmental engineering and sustainability with 40 years of experience installing these types of systems. He cites the majority of his builder clients as early adapters who strive to build green and “want to do the right thing.”

“And that includes a builder like Finbarr, which is extremely motivated for all the right reasons,” says Wilson. “It’s really great to work with a builder like that.”

RELATED: KB Home Counts on Graywater Conservation Tech

The graywater pump basin with slidemount filter and pump.
The graywater pump basin with slidemount filter and pump.

Combining the storm water collection and graywater distribution presents exciting green opportunities for 437 Duncan. Rainwater can be a very high quality water, notes Wilson, and graywater distribution serves the property’s landscape. If the graywater were to run out, such as when homeowners go on vacation, the landscape still receives make-up irrigation from the rainwater collection.

“The idea is to have this hierarchy of water sources, using municipal water as a last resort,” says Wilson.

Wilson adds that San Francisco and similar coastal areas are prime locations for harvesting rainwater, especially during the notorious “June Gloom,” noting a rather surprising source … fog.

“In San Francisco, we get a significant amount of roof runoff in the summer from fog,” says Wilson. “Looking at the annual rainwater totals for somewhere like the San Francisco airport, you’d usually get around 16 to 18 inches. For the Golden Gate Bridge, that’d be more like 88 inches. That’s all from fog condensation, which can be pretty significant.”

Photo Tour: See the Unique Technology Used in 437 Duncan


stairs-1[tps_title]Take a Tour![/tps_title]

While undeniably impressive in its green features, 437 Duncan doesn’t stop there when it comes to technology. 

Tour this gorgeous property and see what other tech surprises lie within and outside its walls.

Click through for photos, tech and a video tour at the end!


(All photos courtesy of Vanguard Properties)

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About The Author

Greg Vellante is a staff writer and multimedia specialist at TecHome Builder, as well as a content coordinator for AE Ventures events. He has over a decade of experience writing for various publications on topics that range from cinema to editorials to home technology. His favorite technologies fall into the A/V and home entertainment realm, and he’s keeping a close eye on the rising trends in robotics and virtual/augmented reality. Greg resides in Boston, holds a degree in Media Studies from Emerson College and pursues screenwriting/filmmaking in his free time.

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