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Q and Q Buillding: Environmentally Sensitive Building

Frans Velthuijsen studied Architectural Engineering in the Netherlands where he grew up. When he ran out of money for school, he came to the United States to work and never left. He started his own contracting business in the San Francisco Bay area. Six years ago he and his wife, Andrea Baruch de la Pardo, came to Nevada City and fell in love with the town. They thought they might retire here but went home and started packing. Frans is now the owner of Quality and Quantity Building Services. His focus is on design/build projects, major remodels, structural repairs and additions.

He recently remodeled a bathroom in a Nevada City home. In this particular bathroom he installed a two-person tub. It has a large window that has a beautiful view of the owner’s private yard. He also installed dimmer lighting to create a more relaxing environment. The bathroom has a standing towel rack mounted perpendicular to the wall which creates a nice design line and also heats the towels.

“Just because you have a small space doesn’t mean you can’t create a luxurious bathroom,” Frans commented.



In several recent bathroom remodels Velthuijsen has added a seat in the shower. These showers have multiple sprayers in the wall so that the sprays come from all sides. He prefers to use Corian and granite in bathrooms as well as kitchens as they are easier to clean than tile and stone with grout lines.

Frans is a Certified Green Building Professional. He specializes in environmentally




economical building components.

“Customers often get overly excited by the concept, and then disappointed to learn how little green building components are being utilized in most building projects. It is surprising, though, how much one can do to minimize his environmental impact by saving a little in a variety of ways.”

For instance, Frans recommends a tankless hot water heater mounted on the exterior of the bath or added when a new bath is installed. With its location close to the tub or shower, it brings instant hot water without having the water transported from another hot water heater located farther away. This can save many gallons of water on every shower or bath. Floor heating that allows the consumer to turn up the heat only in the bathroom and not the whole house is also a good economic choice for the consumer as well as the environment.

Efficient appliances are the biggest energy saving choice in the kitchen. When remodeling a kitchen he recommends installing two ovens”a small one for most everyday purposes and a larger one for entertaining or holiday cooking. Consumers

can also buy wood that is grown in environmentally managed forests. The Forest Stewardship Council certifies growers around the world who utilize the best growing practices to insure that there will be wood for our children and grandchildren to build with.

Q and Q Building has three to five employees. “Remodeling is, in some ways, like recycling as it takes an older house and extends its life for another thirty years. I totally enjoy the creativity of it,” Velthuijsen said.

13676 Lava Ccap Mine Rd.

Nevada City, CA

(530) 478-5610


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