Nestled in the town of Westerly, Rhode Island is a small beachfront community called Weekapaug. A lesser-known New England gem, Weekapaug, which is a Native American word meaning “end of pond,” has many private roads running through it, large saltwater ponds and is open to the Atlantic Ocean. For more than 100 years, summer cottages have decorated the areas landscape and today the area boasts some of the most beautiful residences in New England.

One such home, the Kelly residence, is located directly on the waterfront. Designed by George Penniman Architects, LLC and constructed by Evergreen Building Systems, LLC, the 4,500-square-foot home is clad in white cedar shingles and features azek trim. Designed and built to Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) standards, Evergreen was challenged to create an environmentally responsible home that would prevent moisture from infiltrating the walls and windows due to the property’s significant ocean exposure.
As a full service construction management and design/build firm, Evergreen works with its clients throughout the building process to construct some of New England’s finest, most energy efficient and environmentally friendly homes. The company has deployed effective construction technologies and project management systems to streamline and simplify the home building process.

HydroGap Drainable Housewrap Samples


“[HydroGap] gave us a house wrap that will protect the framing and an effective drainage plan,” said Michael O’Neill, Principal of Evergreen Building Systems, LLC. “[The product] is also robust enough that it can withstand the high winds of a waterfront location before it is covered.”

Introduced in 2012, Benjamin Obdyke’s HydroGap Drainable Housewrap™ offers complete moisture management. The high-performing product effectively eliminates excess moisture, thereby preventing the damaging effects of mold and rot. Its patent-pending one millimeter spacers create a drainage plane between the sheathing and cladding allowing 100 times more bulk water to drain from a wall versus standard housewraps.

Additionally, HydoGap’s low-profile drainage space eliminates the need for design changes in the wall assembly and the product drains at least two times faster than other drainable housewraps. HydroGap requires no special tools for installation and is an effective means to manage moisture and air infiltration resulting in a better-built wall.

“We have been very pleased with the performance of the HydroGap product. It’s easy to work with and the shingles lay flat on it,” continued O’Neill. “We have used it on two other projects and had excellent results on those as well.”
As a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) registered and Energy Star® certified builder, Evergreen is leading the region in the transformation to sustainable green construction. In addition to having a tight building envelope with proven moisture management, the house has a super- insulated shell, geothermal heat and cooling system, durable material on the outside surface, and healthy systems on the inside.

The house, which was completed in the fall of 2012, has achieved a five star Energy Star rating and is currently in the review process for LEED. The homeowners were very intrigued by the HydroGap product and its overall contribution to protecting their home from moisture intrusion.

Project Participants:
Evergreen Building Systems, LLC, Old Lyme, Conn.
George Penniman Architects LLC, Essex, Conn.