2020 Alton Road: Setting Sights on Greenest Home in America

2020 Alton Road foundation

Completion of the stem walls on top of the grade beams at 2020 Alton Road, Miami Beach, FL.

The construction of 2020 Alton Road, a 3,200 square foot, single-family residence in Miami Beach pursuing a LEED Platinum rating is well underway, and the ground floor has just been completed. Before the concrete could be poured, however, a series of preparations were made and underground systems were installed all in accordance with the rigorous guidelines of the LEED for Homes green building certification program.  

According to contractor Robert Arkin and developer Matt Lahn of the Florida Green Home Design Group, at this point in the process, the 2020 Alton Road project is tracking high marks. With respect to the Home Energy Rating System (HERS), the house has a 92% projected energy efficiency rate.

2020 Alton Road Honored by City of Miami Beach, FL

(Front Row left to right): Developer Matt Lahn, Architect Ari Sklar, Miami Beach City Commissioner Michael Gongora, General Contractor Robert Arkin, and Realtor Tara West. (Back Row): Miami Beach City Officials including (fourth from left) City of Miami Beach Mayor Matti Herrera Bower.

This highly motivated green team, working on what will be the first Platinum residence in Miami Beach, has caught the eye of city officials who are also on an environmentally-friendly crusade. Last month in a city hall ceremony, Miami Beach Mayor Matti Herrera Bower and Commissioner Michael Gongora, chairman of the Miami Beach Sustainability Committee acknowledged the Florida Green Home Design Group’s visionary efforts.

Architect Ari Sklar, a Miami Beach native, said that it felt great to be recognized for “the heart and soul he puts into a project.” Lahn added, “It’s a validation of our efforts.” The Arkin Group was simultaneously honored by the U.S. Commerce Association as “Best of Miami Beach” in the category of Miscellaneous Builders & Contractors.

2020 Alton Road, Miami Beach Garage Wall Under Construction

Workers tend to the garage wall which must be watertight since it is adjacent to the cistern.


2020 Alton Road, Miami Beach floor elevation requirements

Due to flood elevation requirements, the garage floor starts 2 1/2 ft. lower than the floor of the main house.

Honors and projected ratings aside, there is much work to be done. Arkin detailed the progress so far which has included pouring foundation for the grade beams, installing rough plumbing, electrical and gas lines, erecting a stem wall that delineates the footprint of the house, back filling as needed, layering plastic sheeting in the soil as a moisture barrier, spraying for termites, and installing first floor rebar.

Going forward, he says, “Some of the next steps are installing outside perimeter concrete block walls and starting the columns and first floor tie beams, then moving onto the second floor.” As the Florida Green Home Design Group tag team at the site, they are monitoring the progress, consulting with their LEED AP, and confirming green partners to complete the visio for 2020 Alton.

You can watch a real-time view of the project here.  Or visit, the 2020 Alton Road website.  To watch the Florida Green Home Building Team accept their honor from City of Miami Beach, click here. 

For more on green building, check out the following Bob Vila articles and videos:

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