A prefab home in Sydney celebrates indoor-outdoor living

February 8, 2019 by  
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Constructed in a Melbourne factory in just 12 weeks, this elegant, prefab home in Sydney offers indoor-outdoor living without compromising thermal comfort. First designed by Sydney-based architectural practice Fox Johnston, the home’s concept was later refined by Australian design/build firm Modscape while honoring the architect’s design intent and the client’s demands. The prefabricated, two-story family home taps into solar design principles to prevent solar heat gain and to ensure comfortable indoor temperatures year-round. Spanning an area of 340 square meters, the modern, prefabricated home was commissioned by clients who needed extra space for their growing family and wanted to take better advantage of the property’s proximity to the beach in Tamarama, NSW. Taking cues from the original dwelling, the architects designed the new home with a similar footprint but added large expanses of glass to strengthen the building’s connections with the front and rear gardens . The existing sandstone plinth has also been integrated into the house to anchor it to the landscape. The material palette echoes the environment with its abundance of timber, which can be seen from the movable timber battened screens on the exterior to the light wood surfaces woven throughout the interior. “As soon as you walk in the front door, you’re welcomed by a generous double-height foyer featuring a staircase that reflects the timber battens used externally,” Modscape explained in a project statement. “In the living room, timber extends up the wall and across the ceiling to help to subtly define the space and beautifully complement the oak flooring. Opting for quality materials that will withstand heavy use from the children rather than ‘showy’ finishes ensure the result is a design that is durable and humble yet elegant and timeless.” Related: A modular extension boasts a seamless indoor-outdoor living experience The living spaces are located on the ground floor while the upstairs sleeping quarters consist of five bedrooms and two bathrooms. To mitigate Sydney’s harsh summers, the home is punctuated with numerous windows and skylights that maximize light and cross ventilation. The home was prefabricated at Modscape’s Melbourne factory in 12 weeks and then transported in 10 modules to the site, where the home was completed after an additional six weeks’ time. + Modscape Images by John Madden via Modscape

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A prefab home in Sydney celebrates indoor-outdoor living

Solar-powered floating hotel room is designed to pop up anywhere on water

January 17, 2019 by  
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Valencia-based architecture firm Mano De Santo has proposed a plug-and-play hotel room that could be easily transported and installed thanks to its modular, off-grid design. Dubbed the Punta de Mar Marina Lodge, the conceptual floating pavilion is a sustainable tourism initiative that targets low environmental impact. Powered with solar energy , the Punta de Mar Marina Lodge would offer a private and luxurious experience on the water for two. Unveiled last year, the Punta de Mar Marina Lodge is envisioned to house two levels spanning a total of 74 square meters in size. The ground floor — approximately 40 square meters — includes a small front terrace that opens to the bedroom, which overlooks views of the water through full-height glazing. The bathroom, technical equipment and storage are tucked in a unit behind the bed, while a small outdoor terrace is located in the rear. Guests can also enjoy access to the roof, where an open-air lounge with seating is located. “Punta de Mar is a sustainable tourism initiative, since it does not generate waste because it is an installation of modules whose system is the ‘Plug & Go,’” the architects said in a project statement. The team also explained that the unit is integrated into its environment with low impact. The hotel can be easily relocated — it can be transported by land or sea — and can be enjoyed in an array of different settings for “unique and exclusive experiences.” Related: This modular outdoor swimming pool from Finland could make a splash near you In addition to the off-site prefabrication of the unit that minimizes waste, the Punta de Mar Marine Lodge was designed to follow passive solar principles to reduce energy usage. Moreover, the indoor temperature, lighting, alarm system and entertainment system can all be controlled remotely via the guests’ smartphones. + Mano De Santo Via ArchDaily Photography by Sergio Belinchon via Mano De Santo

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Solar-powered floating hotel room is designed to pop up anywhere on water

Prefab timber complex shows off net-zero energy technologies in Beijing

January 16, 2019 by  
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Beijing-based architecture firm SUP Atelier has completed the Xuhui Demonstrative Project, a solar-powered community complex that serves as a demonstration project for net-zero energy technologies in Beijing. Built to follow BREEAM and LEED standards, the complex boasts an array of sustainable features ranging from low-waste prefabrication to green roofs. Real-time monitoring and smart automation optimize energy savings and comfort levels. Commissioned by Xuhui Group’s Beijing office for the Xuhui No. 26 Block in Shunyi District of Beijing , the Xuhui Demonstrative Project serves as a small-scale sharing space with rooms that can be digitally booked by residents. The project consists of three main buildings — a fitness center, a meeting room and a book cafe that doubles as an exhibition space — organized around a central sunken permeable courtyard that retains and purifies rainwater. Accessed via wooden boardwalks, each unit is prefabricated from timber; the modular design allows for flexibility and reduced construction waste. “As an experimental platform for prefabricated buildings with zero energy consumption, the project has established an integrated mechanism of the ‘design-construction-test-feedback’ process,” SUP Atelier explained in a statement. “With the help of information technology, the analysis of sustainable indicators can bring forth implementation methods, which can fit in newly built and renovated buildings in cold areas or serve as prototypes in both public and housing projects.” Related: MAD Architects to transform an ancient Chinese courtyard into a kindergarten with a “floating roof” To protect against Beijing’s cold winters, the buildings are wrapped in a high-performance, double-layered timber envelope as well as composite facades with photovoltaic double-glazed glass. Raised roofs with air-ducting devices help mitigate the summer heat and promote natural ventilation. Renewable energy is drawn from film glass, photovoltaic panels and a hybrid heating system that taps into solar thermal energy and an air-source heat pump. + SUP Atelier Via ArchDaily Photography by Su Chen and Chun Fang via SUP Atelier

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Prefab timber complex shows off net-zero energy technologies in Beijing

Tham & Videgrd Arkitekter designs Swedish vertical village built from CLT

January 3, 2019 by  
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Stockholm-based architecture practice Tham & Videgård Arkitekter has unveiled designs for a new housing typology in Gothenburg, Sweden, that will be built from cross-laminated timber. Named the “vertical village,” the project is a “solid timber” iteration of the firm’s previous development by the same name that had been designed for Stockholm in 2009. Like its predecessor, the Gothenburg “vertical village” champions a dense and family-centric development built around a series of connected garden spaces. Proposed as part of a larger site along Landvetter Lake, the Gothenburg “vertical village” was created as an alternative to the row house typology. Each dwelling will be set on a rounded plot surrounded by tall evergreen hedges to create a secluded and private garden for each homeowner. The vertical green massing will also help shape the network of winding pathways that connect the homes to the wider community. All the houses in the development will look identical with a tapered shape that rises to three stories in height. “The houses represent a new vertical typology that minimizes the footprint in order to leave as much land as possible for cultivation,” the architects said of the housing typology. For visual variety, the 140-square-meter row homes will be finished in different colors ranging from red, green, black and gray. The buildings will be constructed with cross-laminated timber and prefabrication construction methods to meet the highest environmental and energy standards. Related: Row house in Vietnam is wrapped in vertical gardens and a lace-like skin The homes will offer a range of one to four bedrooms. The ground floor houses the main social spaces that—thanks to the privacy afforded by the tall hedges—open up to a private garden through full-height glazing. The second floor contains the bedrooms overlooking views of the neighborhood and landscape. The topmost floor consists of a studio with a large skylight . + Tham & Videgård Arkitekter Via ArchDaily

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Tham & Videgrd Arkitekter designs Swedish vertical village built from CLT

A historic hotel is sustainably revamped into a charming alpine village getaway

December 17, 2018 by  
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Bolzano and Berlin-based design practice NOA (network of architecture) recently renovated and expanded the Zallinger Refuge, a holiday guesthouse in the Dolomites that prides itself on its eco-friendly features. Located in Seiser Alm at 2,200 meters with breathtaking mountain views, the updated hotel comprises a cluster of structures that reference the site’s history and South Tyrolean architecture. The project has been certified under Climahotel, a certification program by the Climate House Agency of the Province of Bolzano that recognizes eco-tourism development. The Zallinger Refuge traces its beginnings to the mid-nineteenth century. Seven barns once surrounded the structure, however were later replaced by a single large building near the turn of the century. In a nod to the early site history, the architects constructed seven new chalets arranged in pairs to “bring back the charm of an alpine village.” Crafted to reflect the structure of the ancient barns with a modern twist, the chalets are built using prefabrication methods with stacked wooden blocks and wood shingle roofs to achieve a contemporary “log cabin” appearance. “In this project we have also tried to bring out that strong relationship between architecture and context, which characterizes all our works,” said architect Stefan Rier. “We want to propose new models of life and hospitality that on the one hand recover traditional forms and materials, on the other hand express quality of design, high levels of comfort and sustainability. The alpine environment is a complex and fascinating system that must be understood and respected. We think it’s important to think of new spaces and ways to inhibit it: environments on a human scale, comfortable, welcoming, but above all unique and authentic.” Related: Luxury lakeside hotel promises a return to nature in Italy In addition to the original 13 rooms in the central guesthouse, the Zallinger Refuge has added 24 rooms in the new mini-chalets. Timber lines the interiors for a cozy feel, while an energy-efficient pallet boiler provides the heating and hot water supply. The historic lodge was redesigned to include the reception, the lobby, the lounge and the restaurant. A new metal-clad building introduced to the site houses the wellness area with a sauna overlooking stunning views. + NOA Photography by Alex Filz via NOA

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A historic hotel is sustainably revamped into a charming alpine village getaway

Starbucks unveils store built from 29 recycled shipping containers in Taiwan

October 8, 2018 by  
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Starbucks Taiwan will debut its first Asia Pacific store that is built from recycled shipping containers in the Hualien Bay Mall. The mall has yet to be opened to the public, but it is situated in a touristic area of the city that is well known for its cuisine and features breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean and neighboring mountains. The store spans two stories totaling 320 square meters (approximately 3,445 square feet) and features comfortable seating areas where guests are invited to congregate over a cup of Starbucks’ finest. Starbucks is the first retailer to claim space in the newly built mall. It does so using 29 shipping containers that have been refashioned by famous Japanese architect, Kengo Kuma, who has his name signed to two Starbucks store designs already: the Fukuoka branch in Japan and the upcoming Starbucks Reserve Roastery in Tokyo. Related: Starbucks ditches plastic straws for the environment Inspired by a combination of Chinese architecture and nature, the Taiwan edition receives patrons under traditional bucket arches connoting the overhanging foliage of coffee trees . Inside, the store features warm decor and a comfortable seating area spanning two stories that Kuma decided to stack, creating a much taller space that allows for natural sunlight to enter through skylights installed throughout. These skylights illuminate a brightly illustrated mural at one end of the store, designed as a tribute to the vibrant Hualien culture. The wall mural tames the geometric roughness of the cargo containers, creating a sociable space alongside aboriginal Amis figures whose heritage run deep within the city’s culture. At the other end of the store, visitors are invited to enjoy the beautiful mountain landscape that forms a picturesque backdrop to the port city. Related: A disused railway will become a sustainable green corridor in Taiwan The project is part of Starbucks’ recently announced “Starbucks Greener Stores.” The initiative is aimed at building sustainable stores, which will be designed and operated using reclaimed materials . The Taiwan store joins a suite of locations also built from shipping containers, 45 of which can be found in the U.S. already. The Seattle coffee-chain prefabricates the models offsite before delivery, allowing the company to occupy spaces not necessarily designed for traditional stores. By avoiding the damaging environmental effects generally output on building sites, Starbucks is committed to minimizing its environmental footprint. + Starbucks Images via Starbucks

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Starbucks unveils store built from 29 recycled shipping containers in Taiwan

Icelandic-inspired tiny dwellings ship flat-pack and sell for under $50K

February 2, 2018 by  
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“What would you do with 320 square feet?” That’s the question put forth by the adorable and affordable Plús Hús, an Icelandic-inspired tiny dwelling designed to pop up with ease in any backyard. Designed by Minarc , Plús Hús (Icelandic for “plus house”) is an Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) prefabricated at mnmMOD’s facility in downtown Los Angeles, shipped flat pack, and assembled with minimal waste. The Plús Hús can be delivered anywhere in the U.S. and pricing for the customizable units starts at $37,000. Measuring 16 feet by 20 feet, Plús Hús originated as a response to an amended Los Angeles law that expands usage options for ADUs installed in the backyards of single-family homes. Minarc was perfectly poised for the rollout given their design of the mnmMOD kit-of-parts prefabrication system that constructs energy-efficient homes out of custom-designed structurally insulated wall-panels. The tiny homes lend themselves to a wide variety of uses from Airbnb rental to home office. “Tryggvi and I have been developing our ADU product in anticipation of these regulatory changes for some time, and are beyond excited to introduce Plús Hús to the world,” says Minarc co-founder Erla Dögg Ingjaldsdóttir. “The mnmMOD panel system is versatile, recyclable, and extremely energy efficient , and being from Iceland we pay very close attention to the relationships between nature, ourselves, and what we create. We are constantly looking for ways to do better, and using mnmMOD to create Plús Hús––a simple, efficient, multi-purposable structure that capitalizes on these recent law changes while minimizing wasted energy and environmental impact––makes perfect sense.” Related: These prefabricated mnmMOD wall panels could revolutionize the way we build There are currently three models of Plús Hús: the Plús Hús Open with three walls and a sliding door; the Plús Hús Open+ that comes with a bathroom; and the Plús Hús Full that includes a bathroom and kitchen. The use of mnmMOD’s highly efficient, no-wood prefab panel system ensures extremely high insulation value that minimizes energy usage. The unit is also completely recyclable at the end of its lifecycle. Pricing for the units ranges from $37,000 to $49,000 not including site prep, delivery, or installation. + Plús Hús

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Icelandic-inspired tiny dwellings ship flat-pack and sell for under $50K

Prefabricated garden retreat snaps together in less than a week

February 10, 2017 by  
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If your dream garden look like something from a fantasy world, you’ll love this Dragonfly Pavilion built for a backyard in Hoboken, New Jersey. Built from sustainably harvested and FSC-certified Sapele mahogany and recycled aluminum, this beautifully intricate garden shed takes inspiration from the complex pattern of butterfly and dragonfly wings. New York-based CDR Studio Architects designed this prefabricated backyard retreat, which took less than one week to install. Prefabricated by SITU Fabrication , Dragonfly Pavilion is made with a recycled aluminum frame clad in Sapele lumber and large sections of glazing. A single timber bench is built into the interior while a laminated-tempered glass sits on the roof. The glazing is broken up by a gradient of complex geometric shapes, or cells, that give the structure its delicate, dragonfly wing-like appearance. “These cells are more than just aesthetically appealing,” write the architects. “Their shape and size respond directly to the forces acting on it.” Related: Glowing bamboo pavilion promotes ecological design in Hong Kong The wing-like pattern was derived from a computer-generated algorithm. Mosquito netting is also installed on the interior of the mahogany cells, giving the structure a second, inner skin. The Dragonfly Pavilion’s simple rectangular form allows for a variety of programs, from use as a yoga studio to a small dining area. The pavilion was prefabricated offsite and then reassembled onsite in less than one week. + CDR Studio Architects Photography by John Muggenborg

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Prefabricated garden retreat snaps together in less than a week

Off-grid clinic uses renewable energy to support health services in Chile

January 25, 2017 by  
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The quiet coastal enclave of Caleta El Sauce is as beautiful as it is remote, which means the sleepy fishing village only receives regular medical assistance every 30 days. To assist visiting doctors, SAA arquitectura + territorio designed a small health clinic for the community—a rather difficult task given the hard-to-reach location and absence of readily available potable water and electricity. Thus the building was equipped with solar panels and prefabricated offsite to reduce construction time to just seven days. The 25-square-meter Rural Health Clinic sits on a rocky ledge overlooking the ocean in Ovalle, north of Fray Jorge National Park. Elevated off the ground, the kinked prefabricated structure comprises two main volumes connected together at an angle. One half of the building houses a waiting room and medical room and is mostly opaque, save for a few small square windows, to preserve privacy. In contrast, the other half of the building is completely open on one side and functions as a terrace. A slatted black solar screen was installed on the ocean-facing facade of the building. Related: Solar-Powered Camel Clinics Carry Medicine Across the Desert “Site layout was determined in relation to achieving a connection with the sea, while also generating connectivity with existing homes, but which, given its scale, was capable of projecting itself toward the coast as just another element of the landscape,” write the architects. A support shed for the rural health clinic includes photovoltaic panels that power lighting and charging equipment, a water tank and drain, as well as a small storage space. The clinic’s simple design is conducive to easy disassembly and relocation. + SAA arquitectura + territorio Via ArchDaily Images © Sergio Araneda

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Off-grid clinic uses renewable energy to support health services in Chile

‘The Shed’ by Hufft Projects Glows Like a Lantern on a Hill in Missouri

February 28, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of ‘The Shed’ by Hufft Projects Glows Like a Lantern on a Hill in Missouri Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “sustainable architecture” , barn , barn wood , barnwood , eco design , garden shed , green architecture , green barn , Green Building , green design , hufft projects , matthew huft , Missouri , Prefab , prefab barn , prefab construction , prefab shed , prefabrication , reclaimed wood , shed , Springfield , Sustainable Building , sustainable design , The Shed , white oak        

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‘The Shed’ by Hufft Projects Glows Like a Lantern on a Hill in Missouri

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