Beyond green building practices Conscious Construction brings mindfulness to the building process, aligning social and well-being benefits for builders, owners, and occupants. Conscious Construction promotes inclusion, diversity, social equity, empathetic communication, conflict resolution, and a culture of community in construction.
Offering focused workshops and the unique opportunity for on-site education through building projects at Atlan Center, Conscious Construction provides training for builders with an emphasis on quality craftsmanship, environmental stewardship, and mind/body wellness.
A majority of Conscious Construction workshops are hosted by Atlan, the intentional community where CultureSeed lives, located on 150 acres in the Columbia Gorge region of the Pacific Northwest.
For current workshops, please visit our Events page
The first Atlan community house is currently under construction, and the crew greets each work day with a meditation, allowing team-members to establish a calm focus before approaching the days multitude of tasks. The practice of mindfulness skills allows builders to effectively manage complex projects, learn and innovate new techniques, tolerate stresses and avoid crises. Yoga, Qi Gong, and plant-based meals from the CultureSeed garden are also a part of the experience on-site, and provide bonding opportunities among team members.
Sustainability values are present throughout the project and the reason why the building is a large 5,000 square foot home, informed by community values and economies of scale. The project is redefining how we can live with a smaller personal footprint and a greater sense of community and wellbeing by sharing resources and practicing group decision-making, while experiencing the benefits of high-quality construction. The structure uses local materials and resources including a timber-frame with trees from the Atlan forest, straw-bale insulation, and natural plaster finishes with an emphasis on energy efficiency and long-term durability.
Conscious Construction has evolved from years of discussions between Atlan’s construction community and CultureSeed. Norm Dibble is an artist, adventurer, designer, craftsman, creative problem-solver, and founding member of Atlan Center and the CultureSeed Board of Directors. Inspired by experiences at Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, Pilchuck Glass School, and the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) he studied Ecological Design at The Evergreen State College with a focus on the development of Intentional Communities and Non-Profit Organizations. Norm has also created large scale art installations and directed technical details for significant west-coast cultural events including Burning Man, Beloved Festival, and legendary Peak Experiences at Horning’s Hideout.
Summer Gorder has a passion for creating harmony between nature and the built environment. She worked on the first LEED Neighborhood Development pilot in Dubai and won a grant with her team to design one of the first Living Buildings for the June Key Delta Community Center, achieving net zero energy and water goals. In 2009, she founded EcoREAL Solutions to teach, consult and provide innovative solutions for sustainable and socially equitable developments. She is an avid teacher, training hundreds of professionals to become LEED Accredited Professionals. Community advocacy is at the heart of her work and she hopes to inspire more environmentally and socially conscious construction to protect the natural environment she loves paragliding, skiing and playing in!