Couple spent seven years handcrafting their dream geodesic home

October 3, 2017 by  
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Sheila Williamson and her husband spent over seven years building their dream home, meticulously crafting a gorgeous three-domed geodesic home using reclaimed wood . Located just outside of San Francisco, the home is currently on the market . Located just 30 minutes outside of San Francisco, the home’s atypical design was challenging from the start. According to Williamson, the first hurdle was to battle with the city to get the required building permits. “Just getting the permit was a bit of a challenge because [the building department] had no idea what we were talking about.” Related: Five Great Reasons to Build a Geodesic Home Williamson and her husband designed and – with the help of an engineer – built the 3-sphere, 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom home themselves. Inspired by the work of famed architect and inventor Buckminster Fuller, the dome design began to take shape. Using reclaimed pieces of wood from a nearby warehouse that had been demolished, the structure’s many triangular panels were cut by hand by the couple to create the dome shape . Beautiful hand-crafted stained glass accents are found throughout. The construction process was a community affair in many ways, with neighborhood children helping out in various ways. Reportedly, they even hid messages inside some of the panels to be read if the home is ever dismantled. Three geodesic domes make up the home, which is 1,700 square feet and strategically embedded into a serene, green-filled landscape. The largest dome houses the front entrance, which opens up into the living space with an open kitchen, office, and loft. The interior space is well lit thanks to a large window, which is made up of fourteen triangular panels, as well as a pentagonal skylight in the dome’s ceiling. A wooden open-air deck wraps around the structure, proving stellar views of the surrounding Diablo Valley. The smaller geodesic spaces contain the bedrooms on the upper floor. The master bedroom also has a beautiful skylight along with a private deck that overlooks the natural surroundings . In fact, the home’s close connection to its lush settings has always been the couple’s favorite part of the design, “It’s just the serenity, and it’s quiet at night. If you turn your back to the valley, you can see the stars,” Williamson said. “How often can you see the stars anymore? You can watch them progress across the sky over the year.” Unfortunately, Williamson’s husband passed away last year, prompting her to put the home on the market for $889,000. Via Dwell Photography by Todd Taylor of Taylor Photography Group

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Couple spent seven years handcrafting their dream geodesic home

India aims to bring electricity connections to 40 million households

October 3, 2017 by  
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Millions of homes in India lack electricity . Prime minister Narendra Modi hopes to change that with his Power For All By 2019 plan. Under the scheme, around 40 million households could obtain electricity connections – with the poor receiving them for free. Low income households could finally receive electricity in India. While people won’t get power for free under the Power For All plan – they’ll need to pay for electricity they consume – they could get a free connection. Homes will be connected to the closest electricity pole by a service cable, and the government will install an energy meter and wiring so homes can charge mobile phones and obtain light from an LED bulb. Related: India cancels plans for coal power stations as solar prices hit record low Homes in rural areas that can’t easily be connected to the grid will receive solar power packs of 200 to 300 watts and a battery pack. They’ll also get five LED lights, one DC power plug, and one DC fan, according to BloombergQuint. In addition, the government will provide maintenance and repair for five years. The idea isn’t completely new; Anil Razdan, former power secretary, told BloombergQuint it’s a decade old, and they’ve been working to electrify villages, but now, “after having spent tens of thousands of crore, we’ve finally decided to take it to every home.” Some households in the past couldn’t afford initial connection charges, and under the new plan, such homes could get connections for free. India will need around 28,000 more megawatts (MW) for the plan, according to BloombergQuint. Clean energy has been soaring in the country, according to a statement from Modi , which said in the past three years, renewable energy capacity has nearly doubled. Solar power capacity grew by almost five times. The government’s goal is to produce 175 gigawatts of clean power coming from wind, solar, and hydro by 2022. Via BloombergQuint Images via Pixabay and Wikimedia Commons

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Spectacular forestry dome shines like a gem in the woods of Belgium

July 26, 2017 by  
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Like a Russian Matryoshka doll, this shining dome houses another building within its shell. Architecture studio Philippe Samyn and Partners designed the compact, oval forestry building to respond to the irregular shape of its site, which is timbered with beautiful 200-year-old oak trees. Photo by Marie-Françoise PLISSART Photo by Daylight Liège sprl The facility is located at Marche-en-Famenne in the heart of the Ardennes Forest in Belgium . It’s dedicated to the treatment of sylviculture grains from the Walloon Region. It comprises a pre-drying zone, a storage area, and an area for treating grain. Photo by Simon SCHMITT Photo by Marie-Françoise PLISSART Related: Desert dome camp in Jordan offers tourists “The Martian” experience An apron of reinforced concrete unifies a framework of arcs that constitute the outer skin of the building. Two smaller building placed inside house cold storage, administrative rooms and small laboratories . Photo by Marie-Françoise PLISSART Photo by Simon SCHMITT Related: Prefab smartdome homes can pop up practically anywhere The secondary role of the interior buildings is to provide additional support to the arcs. 1691 tiles of laminated reflective glass cover the entire building and emanate a soft glow at night. + Philippe Samyn and Partners Via Archdaily Lead photo by Marie-Françoise PLISSART Photo by Marie-Françoise PLISSART Photo by Marie-Françoise PLISSART Photo by Marie-Françoise PLISSART

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Spectacular forestry dome shines like a gem in the woods of Belgium

Salvaged materials from devastating fire take new life in a British pier

July 26, 2017 by  
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A British seaside pier destroyed by a devastating fire in 2010 has made an incredible comeback in the hands of dRMM Architects . After a seven-year process, the century-old pier in Hastings, England was transformed from its decrepit and dangerous state to a vibrant new public space clad in reclaimed materials. Crafted in collaboration with the community, the Hastings Pier is an inspiring story of sustainable restoration and craft, earning it a place on the shortlist for the 2017 RIBA Stirling Prize , UK’s top architecture award. Originally constructed in 1872 and later topped with a pavilion that survived until the fire, the Hastings Pier enjoyed its heyday as an entertainment destination in the 1930s but later fell into disrepair and ultimately closed in recent decades due to neglect. Rather than restore the Victorian pier to its original design, drMM wanted to craft a pier better suited to the 21st century and focused on designing an attractive multipurpose space with few buildings. The architects not only redesigned the pier, but also wrote the brief and helped raise funds with the Heritage Lottery Fund that paid for structural repairs below deck and partially covered the costs of rebuilding the pier above deck. The most defining building on the new pier is the new visitor center , that’s not positioned at the end of the pier but rather on top of the damaged pier’s weakest section. The cross-laminated timber structure is clad in reclaimed timber salvaged from the fire and is topped with an accessible viewpoint rooftop that doubles as an events space. The only other structures are a pair of circular extensions that house a kitchen, staff facility, and toilet; a group of hut-like trading stalls; and deck furniture built from reclaimed materials as part of a local employment initiative. The 266-meter-long deck was rebuilt with sustainably sourced African Ekki hardwood. Related: Light-filled cancer center harnesses the healing power of nature RIBA wrote: “From a conservation perspective, this project has reinvigorated a fire-damaged historic structure and facilitated a contemporary and appropriate new 21st century use. The project has been mindful to integrate material from the original pier in the new design, and the process of restoration was used to help train a new generation of craft specialists.” + dRMM Via Dezeen Images © Alex de Rijke

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Kinfolks hipster haven in Brooklyn oozes an off-grid, hippie aesthetic

June 7, 2017 by  
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Pacific Northwest hipster vibes meets Buckminster Fuller in clothing company Kinfolk’s beautiful multi-use events space in Williamsburg. Carved out from a former mechanic’s garage, 94 Kinfolk welcomes guests with two geodesic-inspired shells built of plywood, Douglas fir, and Western red cedar. New York-based Berg Design Architecture designed the events venue to meet the client’s desire for a space that feels “like it was designed for an off the grid Pacific Northwest hippy mathematician.” Located on Wythe Avenue near Kinfolk 90, the creative collective’s first location, the newer Kinfolk 94 events space includes a bar, art gallery, and retail. To bring the former car garage’s 20-foot-tall ceilings down to a more intimate human scale, Berg Design Architecture inserted two timber “geo-shells” and a bar canopy. The curved additions are of slightly different sizes and create semi-enclosed areas that evoke a cozy, bird’s nest -like feel. The shells can be altered with removable panels. Related: Patalab Architects transform dank mechanics garage into light-filled London home “As a design directive the client asked that the space look like it was designed by a ‘Pacific North West hippie Mathematician’,” wrote the architects. “The bar area had to feel intimate on a slow night with only 30-40 people but feel connected to the rear event space when the venue is filled to capacity with 150 people. The bar and event space needed to be adaptable to a variety of uses including art gallery shows, movie screenings, DJ dance parties, musical performances and large dinner parties.” + Berg Design Architecture Via ArchDaily Images © Edward Caruso

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Autonomous robotic garden can drive itself around the city in search of sun

October 5, 2016 by  
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https://vimeo.com/163436492 Designed by UCL students William Victor Camilleri and Danilo Sampaio under the supervision of the Interactive Architecture Lab’s director Ruairi Glynn, Hortum machina, B draws inspiration from Buckminster Fuller’s landmark book ‘Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth’ and his geodesic domes . The mobile ecosystem uses a network of electrodes to monitor the garden’s physiological responses to the environment and then, using this data, propels the sphere into motion. For example, if the plants at the bottom of the sphere lack direct light, the individual panels begin to shift until those plants are sufficiently lit. The robotic core can also move the sphere to a new location if the garden requires shade or if air pollution levels are unhealthy. Related: ON/OFF’s BOULEvard tensegrity ball is a mobile playground in Brussels “With all the discussion of ‘“smart-buildings’” and ‘“smart-cities’” focused on human needs, and the arrival of driverless cars, drones and many other forms of intelligent robotics starting to co-habit our built environment, Hortum machina, B is a speculation upon new opportunities for bio-cooperative interaction between nature, technology and people, within the city landscape,” write the designers. “A growing body of research has revealed electrochemical mechanisms in plants analogous to those found in the animal nervous system. By networking and amplifying plant electrophysiology, [we] believe it opens the doors to giving nature a say in how we design and manage cities better in the future.” Hortum machina, B was tested in London. All plants in the garden are native to Greater London and the machine is powered by an attached solar panel. The unit also has built-in water storage. The experimental project was seen as a way to expand the reach of London’s green space to new terrain. + Hortum machina, B Images via Hortum machina, B

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Stunning Tournesol swimming pool in France opens up like a futuristic flower

August 1, 2016 by  
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The swimming pool is one among several dome-shaped swimming pools, named Tournesol, built in France during the 1970s and 1980s. Designed by architect Bernard Schoeller, the column-free dome structures resemble sunflowers and can be partially opened in the summer. Their compact form makes it difficult to introduce new auxiliary spaces without significantly compromising the integrity of the original design. Related: Shell House provides unlimited peace and tranquility in Kazahkstan Urbane Kultur and Hi-Macs demolished the extensions built over time and moved the changing rooms to allow three stainless steel basins to take place under the dome. The extension, independent from the original structure, houses the entrance hall, changing rooms, office spaces and technical rooms. Several transparent parts offer a stronger connection between the halls, pools and locker rooms. + Urbane Kultur + Hi-Macs Via Yanko Design Photos by Jean Baptiste Dorner

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Stunning Tournesol swimming pool in France opens up like a futuristic flower

UK’s first rooftop geodesic science lab pops up on a girls’ school

November 17, 2015 by  
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The Hubs is a backyard geodesic dome that goes up in under an hour

July 26, 2015 by  
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When it comes to backyard projects, there’s nothing like a do-it-yourself build to get the whole family out in the fresh air for a while. The Hubs maximizes that concept with an easy-to-use kit that brings everyone together, even the kids, to construct a geodesic dome you can call your very own. After a successful crowdfunding campaign , The Hubs is headed into production and will soon be available for purchase, when you’ll be able to get your hands on a ready-to-build kit with all the necessary pieces and parts, or just the bare bones so you can supply your own wooden dowels. The design is simple and you’ll recognize it from children’s toys such as K’nex, as the Hubs is based around snap-together joints. The result is a fantastic durable structure that can be imagined in any number of different ways: a quiet garden, a kids’ hangout, a cozy reading nook, or even an outdoor room for dining al fresco. Read on to see more examples, and learn how to get a kit for your family! READ MORE >

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6 Amazing Green Treetop Paradises for Sustainable Living

May 23, 2015 by  
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Read the rest of 6 Amazing Green Treetop Paradises for Sustainable Living Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: finca bellavista , geodesic dome , green treehouse architecture , o2 sustainability , rooted treehouse , sustainable design , tornado treehouse , treehotel , treehouse , under heaven

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