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sustainable architecture
design strategies + innovative technologies that promote a sustainable built environment
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Grimshaw's Sculptural, Light-Filled Pulkovo Aiport Opens in St. Petersburg

Grimshaw's Sculptural, Light-Filled Pulkovo Aiport Opens in St. Petersburg | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Grimshaw Architects completes St. Petersburg's new Pulkovo Airport, which features a beautiful, geometric roof that fills the terminal with daylight and protects the building from extreme weather.

The striking and sculptural terminal is topped with a large spanning roof that looks dramatically folded wooden origami. The large hall features skylights that pull daylight down into the arrivals terminal below. The Pulkovo Aiport is Phase 1 of a larger masterplan to improve transportation infrastructure in St. Petersburg and situate the city as a gateway to Russia.

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Sitting Lightly on the Land: House S in Vorderweissenbach

Sitting Lightly on the Land: House S in Vorderweissenbach | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

HPSA created ‘House S’ on a steep, rather small plot of land with excellent views. The owners required a cost efficient house with a maximum of 130 m², of living space. A basement was not necessary so that the architects placed the whole building on pillars. 

The U-shaped floor plan responds to the neighbouring settlement. Living rooms and bedrooms are oriented to a terrace that offers great views of the surrounding hills. Because of the chosen typology the natural terrain could be untouched over the whole plot. In the garden the building offers a large, weather-protected area.


View more images at the link.

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20 Teams to Compete in 2015 U.S. Solar Decathlon

20 Teams to Compete in 2015 U.S. Solar Decathlon | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The U.S. Department of Energy has selected 20 collegiate teams to participate in the 2015 Solar Decathlon at Irvine, California’s Orange County Great Park. The eight returning teams will compete against 12 new teams, with partners from four international schools, to build “solar-powered, highly energy-efficient houses that combine affordability, innovation, and design excellence” within the allotted two-year period.

View the full list of competitors at the link.

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Lola Ripollés's curator insight, February 14, 2014 6:09 PM

Solar Decathlon vuelve a la carga!

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Rock Climbing Building Blends in Naturally with Environment

Rock Climbing Building Blends in Naturally with Environment | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Sensing the potential for a climbing community in Polur, Iran, New Wave Architecture designed this new rock climbing hall that mimics the surrounding, rocky landscape of Mazadaran. Equipped with a dynamic climbing hall, temporary accommodation zone, fitness gym and maintenance areas, the design is meant to invite nature and landscape into the building. The large windows allow natural daylight to shine in and provide a view of the nearby mountains...

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Norm Miller's curator insight, February 4, 2014 12:47 PM

Best rock climbing design Ive seen.

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Materials Of The Future: 7 Amazing Trends For 2014 And Beyond

Materials Of The Future: 7 Amazing Trends For 2014 And Beyond | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The history of architecture is deeply engrained in technological developments of the time. Skyscrapers would have never reached such heights without developments in steel, for example, and facades would have never slimmed down without thin-shell concrete.


In a time that is so buzzing with technological development, we cannot help but salivate a little at the material prospects for architecture that are just on the horizon. With 2014 just beginning, we want to take a moment to see what drastic innovations may be leaking into the world of architecture in the near future.

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Floatel: An Off-Grid Floating Tent Retreat with All the Comforts of Home

Floatel: An Off-Grid Floating Tent Retreat with All the Comforts of Home | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The Floatel by Architecture HLM is an entirely off the grid retreat. Designed as a floating tent, Floatel can be deployed anywhere there is calm water. Standard features include a master suite with off-the0shelf battery powered LED lights, a fire pit for both cooking and warmth, mosquito netting and a small kitchenette with powder room and additional storage. Photovoltaic arrays can be added for battery recharge.

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WMS Boathouse at Clark Park by Studio Gang Architects, Chicago

WMS Boathouse at Clark Park by Studio Gang Architects, Chicago | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The 22,600-square-foot boathouse, which cost $8.8 million to construct, continues to demonstrate Gang's interest in the Chicago River and her commitment to turning the much-abused waterway into a public amenity.

Sustainable-design strategies were woven in throughout the project—from planting a pair of small “rain gardens” and using permeable concrete on the plaza (so no rainwater runs off the site) to providing enough daylighting to reduce dependence on electric fixtures...

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Tea Houses by Swatt Miers Architects

Tea Houses by Swatt Miers Architects | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The Tea Houses are places where one could retreat into nature- there are three, each with its own purpose: meditation, sleeping and ‘visioning’ or creative thinking.


Each tea house is designed as a transparent steel and glass pavilion, hovering like a lantern over the natural landscape. Cast-in-place concrete core elements anchor the pavilions, supporting steel channel rim joists which cantilever beyond the cores to support the floor and roof planes. With its minimal footprint, the design treads lightly on the land, minimizing grading and preserving the delicate root systems of the native oaks.

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Emeric Nectoux's comment, January 9, 2014 12:22 AM
Beautiful! I'm a big fan
Betty Fitzgerald's curator insight, January 9, 2014 5:51 PM

My humble glass and wood greenhouse is my go to Tea House. Everyone needs a personal place to quietly be. And tea is always recommended. 

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An Economical Modular Prefab in Oregon

An Economical Modular Prefab in Oregon | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The brief was basic: a simple guesthouse for a familyto live while Bohlin Cywinski Jackson designed their main residence. The architect's design for the is instantly legible with a repetition of trusses, windows, and lumber creating a strong linear profile.

A standard, repeatable, four-foot-wide bay makes use of economical, available materials, such as open-web steel trusses, plywood, laminated veneer lumber, and an insulated aluminum window system. The resulting residence is linear, with an open-plan kitchen and living space, 3 bedrooms, and an office with views over the Cascade Range.

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Best of 2013: Energy-Efficient Buildings Off The Grid

Best of 2013: Energy-Efficient Buildings Off The Grid | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The phrase "off the grid" is quite literal: It means these buildings are not connected to the power grid or sewer systems. There is no need for trash collection and removal, and building materials are often harvested locally—making it beneficial for the environment and your wallet.

Off-the-grid architecture originally had mixed connotations, but off-the-grid living has moved beyond the typical remote shack with no lighting systems. New chemical-free stains and finishes transform reclaimed wood into rich materials for façades, while sustained rammed-earth and recycled steel lend a certain rugged appeal. It has also allowed architects to be more inventive in terms of space, creating structures that provide the privacy of typical homes—without the carbon footprint.

The future of off-the-grid looks promising—perhaps in 2014 we'll see the trend implemented in pre-existing structures in urban areas. Until then, check out the best (and most sustainable) off-the-grid buildings from 2013...

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Norm Miller's curator insight, December 25, 2013 12:09 PM

Homes off the grid need energy storage and that is still the major issue, but TESLA is now making batteries for homes and someday they will be less costly.  For now such solutions are exotic and economically unreachable.

Ursula O'Reilly Traynor's curator insight, December 27, 2013 9:16 PM

Wouldn't it be good to stay in one of these buildings, even for just a short while ....I'm sure it would inspire more of us to think along the lines of sustainability for the built environment of the future. To think outside the box.

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Libeskind's Vibrant Proposal for a New Architectural Icon in Paris: the Tour Signal La Defense

Libeskind's Vibrant Proposal for a New Architectural Icon in Paris: the Tour Signal La Defense | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Every building tells a unique story reflecting both the programmatic content and the singularity of the site, and the Tour Signal La Defense proposal for Paris by In Studio Daniel Libeskind radiates a new spirit with a vibrant, sustainable, mixed-use development.

The powerful, unique icon is expressed in a dynamic volume- a reflection of the aim to create a building before its time. Two intertwined ribbons spiral together formally and programmatically, creating a tower, and open space between, with south-facing vertical gardens to act as biotopes for workers, visitors and residents.

Find more images and project details at the article link...

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Norm Miller's curator insight, December 17, 2013 9:32 AM

Libesiind does it again. 

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A Passive 'House under the Oaks' by Juri Troy Architects

A Passive 'House under the Oaks' by Juri Troy Architects | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The house under the oaks is a low budget passive house concept developed for an Austrian family. With a minimum footprint and a wide outstretching wooden box on six columns it offers a living area of about 100 m2.

The whole structure was done in prefabricated timber with all ecological wood wool insulation of up to 60 cm. The interior is done all in local wood as well with a simple white pigmented oil cover. A heat pump with ground collector, a controlled ventilation system with heat exchange and photovoltaic panels on the roof offer a perfect energy concept with a minimum of required external energy – which is provided by eco electricity. It is a new prototype for affordable living on minimal energy standard in Austria.

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Innovation & Sustainability at Geusseltbad Aquatic Complex, Netherlands

Innovation & Sustainability at Geusseltbad Aquatic Complex, Netherlands | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Masterminded by Slangen + Koenis, this swimming pool complex is the highlight and the heart of the district’s new sports complex in northeast Maastricht, near Geusselt Castle. 

Part of an ambitious modernization scheme, the project combines superb architecture with the highest environmental standards, implementing sustainable concepts and using cradle-to-cradle materials. Thanks to triple glazing, solar panels and geothermal energy, the power consumption could be curbed to one third of what one would expect for a building of this size and programmatic nature.

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Herman van den Bosch's curator insight, December 8, 2013 1:25 PM

Tja, de Maastrichtenaren klagen steen en been. Maar de deskundigologen op architectuur en duurzaamheidgebied zijn lyrisch. Een grote opsteker voor al die bibberende zwemmers: de CO2-uitstoot is dratisch gedaald.

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PARK PASSIVE: Seattle's First Certified Passive House by NK Architects

PARK PASSIVE: Seattle's First Certified Passive House by NK Architects | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Park Passive is Seattle’s first certified Passive House, reducing heating consumption by nearly 90% to meet the rigorous standards for certification by the Passive House Academy and authorized by the Passivhaus Institut. Located on a small infill lot in Madison Park, this striking three-story modern home features a day-lit open stairwell with punctuated views to the street, double-height vaulted kitchen ceilings that visually connect the main living area to an upstairs kids play area, and an open floor plan that flows into a small yard. Park Passive is a model of innovative design that blends livability with sustainability.

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Harbin Cultural Center Designed by MAD Architects

Harbin Cultural Center Designed by MAD Architects | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Harbin Cultural Island is located in the natural landscape of the riverside wetland north of Songhua River. The entire project covers an area of 1.8 square kilometers, with a construction area of 79,000 square meters. In February 2010, MAD won the competition to design the cultural center, which is expected to be completed in 2014 when the Harbin July summer concert will be held.

Influenced by both Chinese and Russian culture, Harbin is reputed as the music capital of the north. Different from other theater buildings that are normally located in the urban center, Harbin Grand Theater will not act as an isolated landmark for the city, but the natural continuation of the human spirit. Apart from regional protection and utilization of the wetland ecosystem, Harbin Theater, Harbin Labor Recreation Center, Harbin Great Square and the Wetland Park together compose the Harbin Cultural Island, to join culture, art and nature in an integrated environment.

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Prefabricated modular home delivered into the Brazilian countryside

Prefabricated modular home delivered into the Brazilian countryside | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

MAPA of Brazil and Uruguay has built a prefabricated modular home and transported it by lorry to a picturesque spot in the countryside outside Porto Alegre.

MAPA built the mobile residence as the prototype for Minimod, a business creating bespoke modular structures; the residential retreat comprises four modules, creating separate areas for sleeping, lounging, dining and bathing within a simple steel-framed structure.

The base of the building is raised off the ground to protect it from rising damp and the roof is covered with plants that integrate a natural system of rainwater harvesting and filtration. The structure was entirely prefabricated before being delivered to its rural location, but MAPA says the buildings can also be transported in pieces and assembled onsite.

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Richard Meier Unveils 180-Meter Tower Development in Mexico

Richard Meier Unveils 180-Meter Tower Development in Mexico | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Richard Meier & Partners has unveiled the “Reforma Towers,” a 40-story, mixed use development planned for Mexico City’s historic Paseo de la Reforma. Comprised of two high-rise towers, clad in white concrete, the new development will bring high end office, hotel, retail space, and restaurants to the city’s distinguished Boulevard upon completion in 2015.

“At the center of development there is a central void, an Urban Courtyard, in the main tower which is a celebration of space, form and light. Natural light will filter through the void between the office modules providing for particularly animated light conditions. We have designed the surface and the volumes of the towers to take advantage of natural light, changes of scale and views to the city,” commented Bernhard Karpf, Design Partner-in-charge. 


By carving a central void through the tower’s volume, the design introduces an unconventional, yet more efficient redistribution of space. Not only do the towers distinguish themselves by reflecting their internal logic through the exterior, but the reconfigured space is intended to maximize transparency, natural light and unprecedented city views. 


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Shanelle Zaino's curator insight, September 23, 2014 9:55 PM

"Every component has been carefully designed taking in consideration the public areas, the city and natural light." 

 

In reading this article the image that stood out  most was this architecual marvel's strong emphasis on nature. In the creation of this mixed use skyscraper ,architects relied heavily on the use of natural light and space. An importance was placed on creating a structure that paid tribute in a sense to the natural world. This does come at somewhat of a surprise in Mexico City, a place known for some of the worst pollution in the world. Global location,altitude and human co2 emissions create a virtual hot bed for pollution. Despite this ,I do wonder if Mexico might be turning a corner to possibly attempt to improve it's environmental relations? Could this be just the beginning of a country that is not only appreciative of nature but attempting to conserve it?

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Bernardo Bader's Haus Fontanella is a chalet built from local wood

Bernardo Bader's Haus Fontanella is a chalet built from local wood | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Bernardo Bader Architects sourced pine and spruce from the surrounding slopes to build this picturesque chalet in a village of western Austria.

The house is situated on a inclined south-terrace-plane to not only benefit from the great view, but also to optimise the property's borders, with the building placed on the upper part of the property and the volume kept as compact as possible.

The whole facade of the building is a made of differently size sliced spruce boards, exactly how they are delivered from the sawmill. The intentional rough planking together with the randomness of smaller and bigger windows generate an exciting facade game and an intimate atmosphere inside with selected framed views to the exterior.


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Yale School of Management by Foster + Partners

Yale School of Management by Foster + Partners | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

The new Yale School of Management (SOM) Campus will unite the SOM’s faculty departments together at a single location for the first time. The building has been designed in response to an integrated curriculum that has the potential to reinvent business school education.

The ground floor contains the public space, cafes and auditorium, with the classrooms and study areas on the upper floors. The classrooms are contained within eight double-height oval drums, visible through the glazed façade. These curved spaces facilitate the integrated teaching methods of the curriculum – more than one lecturer can address the class at once, while still allowing every student a clear view and encouraging free interaction. - See more at: http://architype.org/project/yale-school-of-management/#sthash.6Csdu21M.dpuf

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Hideg House by Béres Architects

Hideg House by Béres Architects | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Focusing on sculptural cliffs and hillside woods, Hideg-ház is an unusual object in the landscape of the outskirts of Koszeg, a historical town in Hungary.

The building is located in a country with very diverse climate. Hot summers and cold winters desire a smart mix of architectural decisions to keep the cabin comfortable and easy to run in all four seasons. The clients had a clear concept about what they wanted to achieve in terms of building services and comfort. A combination of high-tec and simple ecological solutions resulted in extremely low energy consumption and moderate building cost...

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nevcox@easypoolplans.com's curator insight, January 13, 2014 9:56 PM

A Backyard does not need to be all green, look at how carefully placed rocks can create a stunning backdrop and provide contrast on a different scale for this unique home that takes advantage of all this with carefully place windows, even using the direction the timber is laid to highlight the view.

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Eco-Friendly Architecture: 13 Buildings Made From Recycled Shipping Containers

Eco-Friendly Architecture: 13 Buildings Made From Recycled Shipping Containers | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

All over the world, architects are repurposing old shipping containers and turning them into innovative, beautiful houses, hotels, libraries, workspaces, and even seaside observation decks. Shipping container buildings are designed to have a minimal impact on the environment, are cost-effective, and modular designs can easily be moved from place to place.

We hope you'll be as inspired as we are by these 13 buildings made out of shipping containers.

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Cathryn Wellner's curator insight, January 8, 2014 2:00 PM

Shipping containers aren't just rectangular boxes - at least not in creative hands.

Lola Ripollés's curator insight, January 8, 2014 5:39 PM

One of the architectural trends we hope to see more of in 2014 is eco-friendly architecture, and these buildings are excellent examples of that. All over the world, architects are repurposing old shipping containers and turning them into innovative, beautiful houses, hotels, libraries, workspaces, and even seaside observation decks. Shipping container buildings are designed to have a minimal impact on the environment, are cost-effective, and modular designs can easily be moved from place to place. We hope you'll be as inspired as we are by these 13 buildings made out of shipping containers.

Betty Fitzgerald's curator insight, January 9, 2014 6:01 PM

It's nice to see shipping containers beautified. Not just an ugly extra garage for the old buick.:D

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A Tech-Savvy, LEED-Certified Residential Tower Complex for San Francisco

A Tech-Savvy, LEED-Certified Residential Tower Complex for San Francisco | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it
Designed by SF-based Handel Architects, the complex holds 754 units in four towers, and is located in the newly up-and-coming mid-Market neighborhood, nestled between tech giants like Twitter and Spotify.


Although NEMA has a lot going for it in the LEED-Certified design department (polished concrete or wood floors, quartz countertops, soaking tubs and Hansgrophe faucets in every unit, a forthcoming outdoor Public Art Plaza, and Club Solarium inspired for NorCal wineries) it's the tech innovations offered by NEMA that really demand attention. With an eye on the next generation of renters, NEMA has positioned itself wisely to appeal to both those who are able to fork over a little more for sleek, modern design and urban techies who will be wowed by the impressive digital amenities - to say this place is "fully wired" would be a vast understatement...

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Luminous Moon-Gate Taichung City Cultural Center

Luminous Moon-Gate Taichung City Cultural Center | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Luminous Moon-Gate was designed in 2013 for the Taichung City Cultural Center International Competition. The objective was to design a public library and fine arts museum to distinguish itself as a city with arts and culture at its core. To achieve this, the design firm was tasked with creating accessible, attractive, and flexible space, and a rich social and recreational learning environment.

The Moon-Gate follows the philosophy that, with a commitment to improving society, architecture is inherently sustainable. High porosity between buildings allows wind to freely flow around the exteriors; low porosity materials facilitate better control over water and heat retention. Filtration systems throughout the interior and under-slab ventilation maintain steady temperatures. High-efficiency photovoltaic panels installed on top of the library and museum take advantage of the large surface area exposed to the sun, while energy-efficient lighting provides energy savings.

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Monica S Mcfeeters's curator insight, December 18, 2013 11:46 AM

Sustainable building can enrich our lives while keeping the planet healthy.

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Efficient, Contextual and Connected to the Environment: the T House in Quebec, Canada

Efficient, Contextual and Connected to the Environment: the T House in Quebec, Canada | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Taking cues from its bucolic environment, this architecture is defined and modulated by the natural views, sunlight and the topography of the site.

T House was designed with state of the art technical specifications and a geothermal system for energy resources in a rural setting. Fenestration was applied as a function of climate and orientation to ensure the comfort of each space in winter and summer, and operable windows provide cross ventilation.

To the north, the house has few openings. To the south, the roof of the central space projects out over the patio just enough to protect the lobby from overheating in the summer while allowing winter rays to penetrate and bring solar gain. Concrete and natural stone flooring, cool in the summer; since they are exposed to direct sunlight and equipped with a hydronic heating system, they provide ideal comfort during the cold seasons as well...

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Lola Ripollés's curator insight, December 16, 2013 4:58 PM

Dos volúmenes conectados por un espacio charnela de transiciión. En un paisaje canadiense y con materiales que complementan el entorno. 

The first volume, 2 –storey and roughly cubic in shape is clad with wood siding. The second, a single-storey 24m long rectangle, embedded in the ground at one end and cantilevered over the hill at the other end is wrapped in composite cement panels. The center of the composition is an empty space of transition between these two volumes: transparently opening onto a spectacular panorama of Appalachian mountain ridges with Mount Sutton peaking on the horizon.

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Australia's Angophora House by Richard Cole Architecture

Australia's Angophora House by Richard Cole Architecture | sustainable architecture | Scoop.it

Angophora House was designed by Richard Cole Architecture, and it is located in Waverton, a suburb on the lower North Shore of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.

“Built over an escarpment in a densely urbanised heritage conservation area in Waverton, the form of this house responds to the difficult site using the elements of cave, platform and canopy. On entering the house from the upper road, one passes through a curvaceous enclosing concrete wall with rooftop garden over.

Two platforms launch into the space of the valley, extending out from the anchoring escarpment. Insulated timber moveable walls transform the space from warm and enclosing to open and unimpeded. A sheltering timber lined roof opens to the north, falls in response to the slope of the land and captures framed views of adjacent Angophora trees.

The escarpment is retained, raw and open to the rooms of the lower ground floor. A dramatic lift takes the owners to the garage on the street below.”

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Quince's curator insight, December 17, 2013 12:11 PM

"Utilizing the elements of Cave , Platform, and Canopy"  I haven't heard that one before, but I like it! Very nice open design

Lola Ripollés's curator insight, January 8, 2014 5:50 PM

Preciosa casa en Sydney, con un uso magistral de la madera y el hormigón y una increíble fluidez entre el exterior y el interior.