Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry last month unveiled their revamped "Smart Home" exhibit, an eco-friendly home built on the museum's grounds.
Since the exhibit first debuted in May 2008, more than 300,000 guests have taken part in guided tours of the home, which was designed by architect Michelle Kaufmann Designs and built by the Decatur-based All American Homes. Because the exhibit -- which aims to inspire its viewers to live more eco-friendly lives -- was such a hit, the home has been redesigned annually.
For the 2012 design, the museum has turned to Edgewater interior furnishing store Scout and tech blog Gizmodo for help in giving the three-story home a new look. From Scout, the exhibit features many reused and repurposed pieces, including a maintenance table found in a South Side steel plant. From Gizmodo, the home comes equipped with the ability to play a custom playlist upon entering the front door.
Surrounding the home is the "Smart Park," which features pollination-promoting and honey-producing beehives and a 40-foot wind turbine.
"Smart Home: Green + Wired" will run through Jan. 6, 2013 at the Museum of Science and Industry, 57th and Lake Shore Drive. Tickets to the exhibit -- which include general admission to the museum -- cost $23 for adults, $22 for seniors and $12 for children aged 3-11. Tours run daily through 1:30 p.m.
Check out photos by J.B. Spector of the 2012 "Smart Home," courtesy of the Museum of Science and Industry:
The Smart Home's exterior.
Chairs in the living room have been recovered in environmentally friendly faux leather. A 120-drawer console, once used by the Field Museum, accents the far wall.
The Smart Home's luxurious lounge.
The dining room features a former maintenance table from a southside steel plant, as well as an old globe lighting design by Ted Harris.
University of Chicago laboratory cabinets were reclaimed and refurbished to serve as kitchen cabinetry in the Smart Home.
The Smart Home's family study.
The Cybertecture Mirror in the master bath delivers the day's time, temperature, news and traffic, keeps track of your weight -- and even connects to friends on Facebook.
The Smart Home features a garden.
University of Illinois Extension Master Gardeners help plant and maintain the home's eco-friendly landscape.
The Smart Home's green grid.