The Garden Shed

Building the shedThe use of unsustainable forest products, traditional building materials and methods can produce significant, harmful effects to the environment and to building inhabitants. Due to considerable innovations in sustainable building design, technology and materials in recent, newer buildings can have a smaller environmental footprint while remaining eco-friendly. Due to the increasing availability of more sustainable materials at reasonable cost, "green" structures can even be cost effective.

A secure space was needed to store tools, supplies and coldframes for the Patchwork Garden. While the garden cultivates organically grown crops, organic farming means little if it is not supported by green infrastructure.

Construction of the garden shedOur goal for this "eco-shed" was to strike a balance between eco-friendliness and cost-effectiveness. By using green materials within our budget limitations, we were able to construct a small shed that supports the needs of the garden and reinforces the importance of green building for the university.

We hope the shed will provide an example to future Brandeis generations of the ideals of green building on a small scale and reinforce the importance of student activism.


The table below shows some of the eco-friendly materials and their costs. The costs of the materials are equivalent to their less eco-friendly counterparts.

Materials Cost Quantity Eco-Friendly Attributes
2x6x10 Lumber $5.54 9 FSC* Certified
2x4x8 Lumber $2.46 11 FSC Certified
5/8" Plywood $24.64 5 FSC Certified/Not PT**
Shingles $25 1 Wood Only/No Tar

*The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certifies sustainably harvested lumber.
**Pressure-treated (PT) wood is harmful to the environment.

Team Members

Andrew Hogan, Kayley Wolf, Theresa Sheehan and Tim Lam