Chronicles of the Design & Construction of Two Waterfront Hurricane Proof Dry Stack Modular Green Custom Homes
1. Villa Lagoon, Wilder Italian Style Home
2. Nasello Italian Style Home

A Castle of a Home

This article appeared in The Islander, the local Gulf Shores / Orange Beach newspaper in June 2007.

by Jay Jennings

The Gulf Coast of Alabama is being graced by one of the most unique homes ever to be built in the Southeast United States. As the saying goes “A house is a man’s castle” in this case it should read “A castle is a man’s house!” An Italian-style stone castle is being erected along the coastal area of Fort Morgan. In the future another column will be focused on the interior/exterior features of the castle itself.

Today we are going to learn about a revolutionary new building method called DAC-ART. DAC-ART stands for Dial Architectural Components, a modular concrete block building system developed by Ted Dial from Mobile. This patented man made concrete stone block system is a modular building process that has the look of classic architecture with a solid inner core of reinforced concrete plus layers of insulation. These huge, hollow, tinted man made stone blocks are dry set using heavy equipment and the seams are grouted after they are set. The hollow blocks are back-filled with concrete and contain rebar that runs both laterally and vertically throughout the blocks producing a very strong structure. All DAC-ART buildings are custom in design, production, and construction.

“I want people to understand that DAC-ART is a service, not just a product” states innovator Ted Dial. “This isn’t something that folks can just pre-order and have delivered to a building site”. Every home is detailed in such a way that no two are alike and the details (DACs) are consistent with the overall style and lines. DACs may be made of any material that is appropriate to the home and the budget. Dial provides highly detailed shop drawings as well as the full architectural design and construction documents. This planning work is coordinated with a structural engineer for each project. Dial also provides specifications in the form of a workbook which includes the organization of estimates and a tool for editing them.

Along with the castle being built, there is another home currently under construction in the area as well. In fact there are several projects that have been finished in Birmingham and Mobile. One of the homes was featured twice in Coastal Living magazine in 2004 and 2005. To learn more about the product, homes, and documented construction process you can go to www.concretecottage.com. There are links to related services and projects that are quite impressive and educational.

I currently have the castle listed in Baldwin MLS though the home is currently under construction. The owners respectfully request that interested & qualified prospects contact me for private consultations and viewings. You can reach Jay Jennings “The Radio Realtor” at 251-223-1243 or tune in to my weekly Radio Real Estate Shows. Saturday the program airs at 7:30am on 1220AM and then again on Sunday at 7:30am on Sunny 105.7FM. The castle can also be found as a featured listing on www.thejenningsteam.com. (Don’t forget about the upcoming J.P. King auction at Sunset Bay at Bon Secour Saturday June 21).