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sustainable architecture
design strategies + innovative technologies that promote a sustainable built environment
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Retractable Roof House Kinetically Adapted to the Climate of Melbourne

Retractable Roof House Kinetically Adapted to the Climate of Melbourne | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

As the name suggests, the Convertible Courtyards House, by Christopher Megowan Design, kinetically adapts to the notoriously variable climate found in Melbourne, Australia. This project added a kitchen, living area, dining area, bathroom, master bedroom, ensuite and two decks to a previously overlooked yet charming weatherboard cottage in the inner urban suburb of Prahran. Nestled on an intimate street, the existing house is one of a series of heritage protected cottages. In response to the north-facing block of land, a central courtyard was created between the weatherboard and modern extension in order to flood the open kitchen, living and dining area with natural light...

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Melbourne's Bentleigh School wins most sustainable educational institution at International Green Awards

Melbourne's Bentleigh School wins most sustainable educational institution at International Green Awards | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Bentleigh Secondary School in Melbourne's east has been named the most sustainable educational institution according to the International Green Awards which were held in London this month.
Suters Architects have been involved with the school over many years in the redevelopment of the entire campus and worked in partnership with the college to design stages 1 and 2. Project Leader, John Schout said that the campus has a positive effect on the environment as well as changing the behaviour of staff and students to best practice environmental management:
"A new building, a Meditation and Indigenous Cultural Centre, designed entirely of timber is an example of sustainable carbon capture principles and will be completed in 2013. Key ESD initiatives include shading and natural light, solar panels, water treatment and wetlands and a planned thermal heating and cooling system."
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Sustainable house reduction by Make Architecture

Sustainable house reduction by Make Architecture | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Winner of the sustainability category in the 2012 Houses Awards, the footprint of this home in Melbourne was actually reduced in size as part of an ingenious re-design by Make Architecture. Smaller spaces and multi-functional rooms were designed to “move towards smaller, more flexible houses as an essential response to conserve resources and reduce carbon footprints” say the architects. External screening was used to provide flexibility and allow for the expansion and contraction of spaces as required. Built in joinery and daybeds also streamlined the footprint.

The house reduction itself is an environmentally responsible design, achieved by a careful analysis of the family’s needs. As a result, many multi-functional spaces were incorporated: the kitchen can work as study/library/second living room. The house has been orientated for maximum solar gain, and the pergola and screens provide protection in summer and let winter sun in. Cross ventilation has also been carefully considered with high louvres used to vent the house in summer. Other sustainable features include water collection, led lighting, insulation, fans and the use of FSC certified timbers...

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Contemporary Cousin-Homes in Melbourne by dKO Architecture

Contemporary Cousin-Homes in Melbourne by dKO Architecture | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

dKO Architecture recently completed in Australia. “This project consists of two dwellings on a corner lot in the suburbs of Melbourne. dKO Architecture set out to push traditional suburban perceptions, motifs and vernacular. Formally, there are obvious references to traditional roof form, yet we proposed a different formal solution. It needed to be sensitive. These gestures challenged traditional building technologies yet also offered economical and lightweight possibilities.

Another issue was the idea of identity with two houses that are the same but different. There are nuances in form, color and spatial arrangements. Living is on the top floor, partly due to the limited lot, but also to engage the roof form.

The site layout responds and respects the historical subdivision pattern; adjacent built form is respected through setback, form and materials. Interior details are simple and considered, not ostentatious. We achieved this outcome on a modest budget of $650000, proving that architecture can also provide good value”.

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Melbourne: making green buildings the norm

Melbourne: making green buildings the norm | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Melbourne has inherited from a “new world city” grid: much of the middle and outer suburbs are characterized by low density sprawl and high dependency on the automobile. But in 1985, the Strategic Plan - meant to revitalize the Central Business District - started to reverse the pattern. This masterplan has subsequently benefited from Jan Gehl’s expertise, who recommended good sense and efficient measures such as tree plantings, restrictions on cars and improvement of the public spaces...

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Contemporary Green Design: Merricks House by Robson Rak Architects

Contemporary Green Design: Merricks House by Robson Rak Architects | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Robson Rak Architects have designed a house on a 10-acre farm located in Merricks North near Melbourne, Australia. The property was bought as a weekender with the intention of building a new house with enough room for their family to grow and enjoy through the generations.


From the architects: 

In accordance to the client’s desire for simplicity and material honesty, the house has been reduced to a modest palette of earth, glass and timber. The majority of the internal walls are rammed earth, creating a beautiful, warm, textural look and feel.

The walls are 400mm thick with an internal strip of 100mm thick foam insulation, assisting the natural qualities of the rammed earth in maintaining a consistent internal temperature. The R-value of the walls up to a very high level, and the double-glazing of all windows and doors assists the building in being extremely environmentally efficient as attested by our clients. The high thermal mass of these walls has made the house thermally efficient. Openable windows on the east, west, north and south allows cross ventilation.

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Window Revival's comment, July 17, 2013 12:18 AM
A really lovely home. Rustic yet very modern.
aboali's comment, July 17, 2013 5:04 AM
that nice desing
Suzy Koch's curator insight, August 2, 2013 8:17 PM

Love all the great features in this contemporary green design!

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Shakin Stevens House by Matt Gibson Architecture + Design

Shakin Stevens House by Matt Gibson Architecture + Design | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Matt Gibson Architecture + Design have designed the Shakin Stevens House in Melbourne, Australia.

‘Shakin Stevens House’ utilises many environmental principles – retention of existing structure, orientation and configuration of new works, sun protection (eaves), exposed thermal mass, passive temperature regulation, low embodied energy construction techniques & materials, structural depth within walls for mass bulk insulation with R values, insulation of entire existing dwelling (floor, walls, ceiling), use of recycled timber flooring/decking. A grey water system, 2 side water storage tanks, fake grass & ‘succulent’ planting temper water usage whilst providing intrinsic features of the colour scheme.

Beyond these, this project is about providing a future robustness, better utilisation of amenity and a more fuller embracing of its urban condition. They have borrowed what was previously laying dormant within and beyond their walls. This new layout provides for a sustainable model of space/s that can sustain user types (a couple, 2 couples, a family with teenagers, guests) through separation of sleeping zones about a flexible living zone that they can upsize (externally). This project embraces it’s ‘green-ness’. Colour was a vital strategy in adding glow and clarity to this expression on a number of levels...

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Levt Keira Taroreh's curator insight, February 18, 10:00 AM

perfect, simply and clean, 2 thumbs up!

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Andrew Maynard Renovates a Modern Melbourne Home With a Giant Grassy Hill!

Andrew Maynard Renovates a Modern Melbourne Home With a Giant Grassy Hill! | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Hill House, located in Melbourne's northern suburbs, has received a playful and dynamic makeover by Andrew Maynard Architects.

The extension, which was added over 10 years ago, had created a dark inside area. So to bring more light into the space, the architects made an upgrade that would maximize the use of the south-facing backyard. The structure now finds itself fully-integrated with the landscaped outdoor space and flooded with light, and the backyard has become a central feature to the building with plenty of space for play and relaxation...

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Interview with Peter Ho, PHOOEY Architects

Interview with Peter Ho, PHOOEY Architects | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
PHOOEY Architects are a young, enthusiastic and progressive design practice from Melbourne, Australia.

Their portfolio extends from large scale master planning to small scale furniture design. They explore architecture which advocates for environmental, social and cultural awareness and consideration. PHOOEY Architects genuinely and actively explore the use of recycled materials while minimising consumption waste.

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