In 2011, Common Ground Center added a sustainably built and comfortable Eco-Lodge to its facility. Common Ground is now available to rent year-round and offers accommodations for a wider range of guests. Use the Eco-Lodge during your wedding for older guests and bridal parties, rent the Eco-Lodge for winter retreats and utilize our snowshoe trails and woodstove, or simply rent the facility for the day and hold a business meeting in the Common Room while gazing out at the Green Mountains. The possibilities are endless!
The Eco-Lodge can sleep up to 31 overnight guests in comfortable rooms. It has a furnished Common Room ideal for meetings, family reunions, retreats, reading and games, and even yoga! The building was sustainably built with wood off our own land and is 100% solar powered. Read about these features in detail below.
The Common Room
The Eco-Lodge Common Room is a large space with many functions. It is furnished with comfortable chairs and couches for small group meetings, reading, and lounging. The expansive Common Room windows face south overlooking the Green Mountains, providing an inspiring view in summer, fall, spring, and winter. Other features include:
- A woodstove for cozy warmth in the cooler months.
- A small kitchenette complete with refrigerator/freezer, microwave, gas oven and stove, and sink.
- Tables and chairs for more a more studious retreat or for playing card games and sharing meals.
- A fully handicap accessible restroom.
- Wireless internet.
- A utility room with two coin operated washer/dryers.
The Eco-Lodge Rooms are unique, comfortable, and peaceful. All of the rooms are soundproofed to a degree exceeding hotel standards, allowing for relaxing quiet. The décor is simple, but appealing, including unique tiling in the guest bathrooms and warm plaster walls.
The Eco-Lodge is ideal for older members of your party as well as those with mobility issues. Half of the rooms are accessible at grade level and one room has a fully accessible handicap bathroom. No detail was spared in furnishing the rooms.
All guestroom beds are convertible bunk beds. Guests can move beds together or apart, allowing for ideal sleeping arrangements.
- Eco Rooms #1 & 2: Four bed spaces and a private bathroom complete with shower. These rooms face south.
- Eco Room #3: Four bed spaces and a private bathroom complete with a tub. This room faces south.
- Eco Room #4: Four bed spaces and a private bath complete with a shower. This room and bathroom are handicap accessible. This room faces south.
- Eco Room #5: Four bed spaces, no bathroom. This room adjoins to Eco Room #6 and is close to our central bathhouse.
- Eco Room #6: Four bed spaces and a private bathroom complete with shower.
- Eco Room #7: Two bed spaces and a private bathroom complete with shower.
- Eco Room #8: Five bed spaces and a private bathroom complete with a shower.
(Eco Rooms 5 & 6 are considered a eight-person suite because of the adjoining door. Guests may choose to split this room up into two or use it as one.)
The Eco-Lodge is earth-friendly and sustainable...
Another unique feature of the Eco-Lodge is its conscious design for low energy usage. This is accomplished by:
- Large windows, skylights, clerestory windows and solar tubes, to provide natural light in all rooms
- A “living roof” covered with grass and wildflowers, providing natural insulation while helping the building blend into the landscape
- Super-insulation throughout, keeping heat in during the winter months, and cool air in during the summer
- Photovoltaic panels on the roof, providing all of the hot water during the summer months and half of the heat needed during the winter
- Efficient radiant floor heat, half of which is provided by a propane boiler with a 96.1% fuel efficiency rating
- Polished concrete floors, which conduct heat in the winter and are cool in the summer
- Natural cooling in the bedrooms, with opportunities for venting out hot air
- An option to heat the Common Room with a wood stove, for renewable energy
- Eight solar trackers, providing all of the electricity used by the lodge and surrounding campus
The Eco-Lodge is built from local resources, with recycled materials, and with non-toxic finishes...
There is a special feel to the Eco-Lodge, likely because we put an emphasis on using natural materials found on site, and recycled materials where possible.
- The large support beams, decking, and outdoor siding were sawn from hemlock and pine from the CGC forest
- Each room has finish details fashioned from the different tree species harvested on site, including maple, oak and pine
- The red maple from our woods was milled into flooring for the Common Room
- The stones forming the façade on the Common Room and supporting the porch roof were found from excavation projects on site
- All finishes are low or no VOC; breathable clay plaster lines the walls in most rooms
- Recycled materials include sinks and glass bricks purchased locally.
- Where possible, purchased materials were found locally (eg Vermont Slate for the patio).
Still want to learn more about our green building choices? Click here to view the blog we kept during the construction process. And click here to learn more about sustainability at Common Ground.
In April 2011 we hosted a Grand Opening event to celebrate the completion of the Eco-Lodge. Bill McKibben was our keynotes speaker! You can view a video of his speech here.