Carbon-neutral home in Australia makes small living big
Australian architectural firm Whispering Smith's recently completed House A combines innovative, space saving design with carbon neutral credentials to create a blueprint for big living on a small footprint.
Located in Perth, Australia, House A is a 70 sqm (753 sq ft) compact home built using concrete panels that are made with 65 percent slag (a by-product of steel production) as opposed to high carbon emitting cement, and recycled bricks.
Designed for comfortable and flexible living, the home has enough space to accommodate a dinner party for up to 30 guests.
"House A is our first foray into being a developer. We wanted to build a prototype for an apartment-house hybrid to show people how small can be big if you work hard at the design," say the architects. "The brief was to take a 175 sqm [1884 sq ft] block under Perth's single bedroom dwelling code, and make an affordable and sustainable home for Whispering Smith's Director, Kate and her partner Matt."
Influenced by Mediterranean architecture, the home's open interior floorplan seamlessly blends each living space and zone into the next. The clever floorplan maximizes interior usable space by eliminating the need for doors, and in some cases, walls.
The open planned living area flows into a wall kitchen and a separate study, which could also be used as an additional bedroom. The three zones wrap around the central courtyard, allowing an abundance of natural light to filter through the home, while also giving the impression of more space. Large folding glass doors in the living area open up directly to the outdoor terrace, and an elevated master bedroom with large ensuite bathroom and an underground garage complete the compact design.
The home achieves its carbon neutral status with the use of recycled and reclaimed materials; incorporated with passivhaus design, ample natural light and airflow, plus the installation of rooftop photovoltaic panels. The home also features an underground rain tank and an internal drying line. The existing trees on the site were also maintained and incorporated into the layout of the new home.
"The house is a product of highly efficient planning and employed commercial tilt-up concrete construction methods to achieve a tighter and taller footprint. The project relied heavily on craft, detailing and a raw material spec to provide amenity and delight in the small footprint," say the architects.
Whispering Smith did not provide us with a final cost for House A, but assure the project was designed as an economical and sustainable housing solution.