In terms of Your question about environmentally friendly alternatives to concrete foundations,
The answer is yes,
Ever heard of a corner stone,
Well this stone was the first placed stone used as a pier, then many more stones were placed and joists for the floor!
This is one of the most simple and basic methods,
If I was to build it I would dig a gravel trench of igneous rocks, and then pour water over them and pack them deep into place and level them, then use the stone,
this will help with the consolidation process,
So basically when you build a house your applying a load to the soil and over time this is going to compress the soil and cause movement,
soil is not soil it moves about!
I am going to stop on the soil mechanics talk as it will be a rabbit hole!
There are several other Methods of environmentally friendly alternatives,
However realistically if I was to build in suburbia, I would just use concrete as it just so much simpler do achieve the goal of building a home you can live in!
Or we might never have existed at all. Freaky. So we should cherish everything. Even this tiny ad: