Many sites have limited solar access, and are often written off as unsuitable for a low-energy high-comfort house. This should not be. This site in Neutral Bay, like many urban sites, had significant shading to the north, but we took advantage of one ‘window’ of north sun at ground level, and then ‘borrowed’ the rest from solar collectors on the roof.
The owners of this award winning house wanted a sustainable home that would cater for their growing family and a separate granny flat for overseas visitors… all with a tree house feel. Lots of established trees, and steep land sloping away from the road contributed to the challenge of providing universal access to the main living area of the house.
This homestead in the hinterland of NSW Central Coast, looks a lot bigger than its 380m2, thanks to the separate pavilions with connecting roofs, and generous covered outdoor areas. Additional to the family home is guest accommodation, and a corporate headquarters for the farm and the owner’s broader business interests – all expressed in a very detailed design brief.
The Read Triplets were born with muscular dystrophy and are wheelchair bound. Envirotecture are very proud to be involved in the effort to design and build a home to cater to the needs of the Read family, now and into the future.
The long plan of the home provides maximum northern solar exposure to warm the home during the cold winters. Generous overhangs provide the shading you need in an area that often reaches high 40°C. A retractable awning over the northern deck gives the flexibility to provide sun or shade as desired during the shoulder seasons.
These two houses were designed and built in the evolving contemporary style of the beach cottages once common on the Northern Beaches of Sydney. The site is on the banks of Manly Lagoon, and being a flood basin, minimum floor levels mean that the building is elevated. The site orientation is ‘mixed’ – meaning neither axis faces true north.
A 70s vintage apartment which had been bequeathed to the Australian Conservation Foundation had some serious problems. The ACF is Australia’s peak environmental body, and saw both the need to lead by example, and the opportunity to set new standards. Envirotecture was approached to design the renovation using best available sustainable principles, methods, and materials.
We maximised passive solar design in this house and brought in natural light especially to existing part of the house. The home is energy efficient in appliances and fittings and heats and cools itself passively. A solar hot water system, boosts the efficiency of the existing instantaneous system. Most of the water comes from a 10,000L rainwater tank.
Our clients wanted a home for an expanding family, and a home office, with hi-tech sustainable features to reduce their family’s ecological impact. Working with the site and the original dwelling, the additions and alterations saw a small, hot weatherboard cottage transformed into a comfortable sustainable home and office.
Envirotecture produced the winning entry in an invited competition for a demonstration house to be built by Bathurst Regional Council. This will be a showcase for the local community, to influence residents to make more sustainable choices when purchasing new homes. Given the stresses placed on our environment by urban growth, it is critical that such practical leadership is shown.
This design exercise was commissioned by a major roof tile manufacturer to explore some new possibilities for the use of their new range of shallow-pitch roof tiles. The twisted plane roof concept was developed in conjunction with workshop testing of the construction tolerances of the tiles, to ensure mounting and weatherproofing were not compromised.
Envirotecture regularly collaborates with different kinds of builders to achieve good results on restricted budgets. This house at Copacabana on the NSW Central Coast is one such project, where conventional construction methods exceeded the client’s budget, and an innovative method provided by a specialist builder solved the problem.
This project currently under construction is a new dwelling on the northern beaches of Sydney. A steep west facing site within a mature spotted gum forest and natural rock formations allowed us to explore other ways to ventilate, heat and cool this building.
The design brief was a long time brewing, with several different concepts developed and discarded along the way. The clients, who are passionate about sustainability, did not want to just make the house bigger, they wanted to make it better! …although it was a very small house to start with.