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Posts Tagged ‘Geothermal Energy’

* Residential Architecture: Tred Avon River House by Robert M. Gurney Architect

Posted by the editors on Friday, 31 May 2013

Tred Avon River House by Robert M Gurney Architect

Residential Architecture: Tred Avon River House by Robert M. Gurney Architect: “..Easton, Maryland (USA), located in Talbot County on Maryland’s eastern shore, was established in 1710. Easton remains largely agrarian, with numerous farms interspersed among the area’s many waterways..Diverging from several acres of cornfields, a one-quarter mile road lined with pine trees terminates at a diamond-shaped tract of land with breathtaking views of the Tred Avon River. Arising from the gravel drive and hedge-lined parking court, this new house is unveiled as three solid volumes, linked together with glass bridges, suspended above the landscape. The central, 36-foot high volume is mostly devoid of fenestration, punctuated only by the recessed 10-foot high entry door and narrow sidelights. The contrasting 12-foot high western volume contains a garage and additional service space, while the eastern volume, floating above grade, contains the primary living spaces..After entering the house and passing through one of the glass bridges, the transformation begins. Initially presented as solid and austere, the house unfolds into a 124-foot long living volume, light-filled and wrapped in glass with panoramic views of the river. A grid of steel columns modulates the space. Covered terraces extend the interior spaces, providing an abundance of outdoor living space with varying exposures and views. A screened porch provides an additional forum to experience views of the river, overlooking a swimming pool, located on axis to the main seating group..Along with a geothermal mechanical system, solar tubes, hydronic floor heating and a concrete floor slab to provide thermal mass, large overhangs above the terraces prevent heat gain and minimize dependence on fossil fuel. The entire house is elevated four feet above grade to protect against anticipated future flooding..The house is crisply detailed and minimally furnished to allow views of the picturesque site to provide the primary sensory experience. The house was designed as a vehicle to experience and enjoy the incredibly beautiful landscape, known as Diamond Point, seamlessly blending the river’s expansive vista with the space..”  Lovely site; extensive glazing, natural light, river views; interesting fenestration and framing, materiality (as always with Robert M. Gurney Architect), contextuality, volume sensibility, detailing..

See our posts on other residential work by award-winning Robert M. Gurney Architect:

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image: © Maxwell MacKenzie; article: “Tred Avon River House / Robert M. Gurney Architect” 29 May 2013. ArchDaily

Posted in Architects, Architecture, Architecture + Design, Awards, Contemporary Architecture, contemporary design, Design, Design & Decoration, Designalog, Interior Decoration, Interior Design, Interiors, Residential Architecture | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

* Residential Architecture: Mineral Lodge by Atelier d’Architecture

Posted by the editors on Sunday, 13 January 2013

Mineral Lodge by Atelier d’Architecture

Residential Architecture: Mineral Lodge by Atelier d’Architecture: “..Mountain ranges often appear to be sublime. Under a mantle of snow their enormity would seem to defy the possibility of architecture. Time does not pass. Eternity stands opposed to the fragility of human accomplishments. And yet contemporary architecture has a place in an ancient hamlet. A fact amply demonstrated by the recently constructed Mineral Lodge at an altitude of 1200 metres in Savoie, France..As the site offers exceptional views of the surrounding mountains and valleys, the project makes use, perhaps emphasizes, this stunning and dramatic natural landscape. In such an impressive environment building must take place with a light hand. In this natural and majestic scene, building becomes an act which must be in dialogue with the immemoriality of the rocks’ own historical movements. The rocks fix time. Building therefore is the moment at which human time encounters geological time. The Mineral Lodge is a refuge of stones and rocks. As such it stands at a distance from the norms governing the tradition of recently constructed chalets. The latter are marked by an attempt to portray luxury. The hamlet of Villaroger has strict construction rules. The project which began with both the ruin of a farm – all that remained were the outside walls – and an adjacent pre-existing chalet offered the chance to construct a dialogue between a vernacular architectural presence and the contemporary desire for a sustainable architecture informed by the most recent technological developments..This dialogue guided the construction. A physical link was created with the pre-existing chalet by providing a nine metre vertical opening between the buildings. In the new chalet the stonewall of the old chalet was left as it was. Careful reinterpretation of vernacular architecture accompanied the project. What matters therefore is the emergence of another chalet from a pre-existing ruin. This is an important undertaking because the Mineral Lodge establishes architecture in a place where previously there had not been architecture but mere building. The Lodge departed from a historical perspective and was inscribed in vision of the future. The stone house was not rebuilt. The project imagined possibilities for ruptures and transitions such as the square wooden box that is projected outside the glass wrap of the curtain-wall. This element acts as a reference to local overhang attics and addresses the typology of vernacular architecture..A number of views on the landscape are provided:  the ruins facing North are punctuated by an “observatory balcony” with a panoramic view. The second floor level delivers a variety of vistas. The roof takes an important role in the project. Instead of constructing another traditional wooden roof, a reinforced concrete roof serves as an envelop and allows for a more flexible use of space. Height limitations imposed by regulations gave the opportunity to work on a variety of levels connected by different staircases. The interior space is thought as a series of sequences providing areas based on fluid and open circulations. The kitchen situated on the ground floor is covered by a large skylight..The use of stone as surface cladding is visible throughout the project. The horizontal and vertical openings of the staircase volume could only have been constructed with concrete walls. From outside the openings which correspond to program are not immediately legible. Heightening thereby the effect of the surface. The idea of a visible relationship between the interior and exterior is abolished. At the same time, this strategy reflects the older chalets of the village in which the openings do not indicate what kind of space lies behind: bedroom, kitchen, living room… The Mineral Lodge’s wooden box has a singular contact to the stonewall. Each stone registers its relationship with each wooded panel. The latter adapting to accommodate the irregularity of the stones. Through this interaction fundamentally different materials achieve a subtle connection..Earthquake constraints and avalanche protection are integrated into the structural design. Mineral Lodge in terms of sustainability and energy consumption achieves the highest standards due to geothermal heating.  A heat pump circulates water in three 150m deep drills in the rock where temperature is stable year round, and the presence of underfloor heating and double-flux ventilation means that the entire heating and cooling system is invisible..In sum, the Mineral Lodge embedded in existing ruins yet not touching them creates an intermediary space. This interstitial space maintains as productive an ongoing tension between past and present. As a result, the Mineral Lodge offers an architectural environment without expressing any kind of traditionalism. In opposition to the conventional chalet where window sizes used to be constrained by thermal insulation, the Mineral Lodge offers more light into the house with high quality glass and framing. In the French Alps the traditional architectural expression in ski resorts have become a commercial slogan lacking any sense or interest.  The Mineral Lodge is a rare attempt to counteract this nostalgia driven architectural predilection ever apparent in Savoie..”  Extensive glazing, natural light, views; interesting form, interior volumes, fenestration and materiality..

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image: © N.Borel; article: “Mineral Lodge / Atelier d’Architecture” 10 Jan 2013. ArchDaily.>

Posted in Architects, Architecture, Architecture + Design, Contemporary Architecture, contemporary design, Design, Designalog, Interiors, Residential Architecture, Sustainable Architecture, Sustainable Design | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

* Residential Architecture: H3 House by 314 Architecture Studio

Posted by the editors on Tuesday, 8 January 2013

H3 House by 314 Architecture Studio

Residential Architecture: H3 House by 314 Architecture Studio: “..This private house of a total 1000m2 is located on a plot of land of 7000m2 [in Athens, Greece]. The house was designed in order to give the sense of hovering over the water and sailing, inspired by the owners love for yachts..The bioclimatic design of the residence, the cooling feeling of the house through the contact of water and the use of sun and the geothermic energy are consistent in developing a highly dynamic and modern but also eco friendly design..”  Extensive glazing, natural light, views; interesting form and inspiration; multiple pools..

See our post on another home by 314 Architecture Studio: Residential Architecture: H2 Residence by 314 Architecture Studio.

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image: Courtesy of 314 Architecture Studio; article: “H3 / 314 Architecture Studio” 01 Jan 2013. ArchDaily. <;

Posted in Architects, Architecture, Architecture + Design, Contemporary Architecture, contemporary design, Design, Designalog, Green Design, Interiors, Residential Architecture, Sustainable Architecture, Sustainable Design | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

* Residential Architecture: Meadow House by Ian MacDonald Architect

Posted by the editors on Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Meadow House by Ian MacDonald Architect

Residential Architecture: Meadow House by Ian MacDonald Architect: “..This retreat for a family of four is located on a 90-acre property of rolling meadow with an historic farmhouse and barn. Our objective was to create a quiet dwelling that preserves a meaningful connection with its landscape and with its historic settlement..The “obvious” location for the house might have been a hill overlooking the landscape, but the visual presentation from this site would have been overwhelmed by the road and by neighbouring houses. Instead, we built the house into a hill, hugging the land and insulated against Ontario’s heat, wind and snow. Thereby, we have screened out views of the road, exposing instead a meadow that gently rolls towards the existing farm buildings and the landscape beyond..Our project included a watercourse that uses rainwater collected from the roofs of the new house and the original barn. Water flows alongside the house into the meadow and through a series of brooks and ponds to the barn, establishing a walking path that connects the house with its surroundings and the historic farm buildings. The watercourse merges the house with its landscape, and also provides the meadow with a new ecosystem that has introduced plants, fish and birds to the site —with the added value of being safe for both swimming and drinking..We have dramatically reduced the physical presence and the environmental impact of the house by submerging it into the landscape and covering it by a roof that is planted with the same grasses as the surrounding meadow. And we have further connected the house with the landscape by using locally sourced, durable materials and by heating and cooling the structure with a water-based geothermal system..Since the home is very sheltered it might have been dark inside, but light monitors on the roof pull south light right into its centre. During the winter, the low sun shines directly through the monitors’ glazed apertures adding light and warmth. In the summer, the monitors’ forms reflect all but a small proportion of the higher sun, reducing the light and heat entering the building. The monitors are also operable, allowing ventilation and hot air to escape. Because the monitors are indirect, the light they provide is soft and even..instead of a distinct separation between interior and exterior, our composition is made up of several intermediary spaces, (such as the space where the watercourse flows between the house and the outer retaining wall) that create a sort of middle ground between the house and the world beyond. These spaces provide intimacy and protection, while still offering a connection with the broader landscape. They also address our physical and psychological needs with the changing seasons and climatic conditions, by providing this civilized transition between inside and out.. The result is a house that feels simultaneously intimate, grand and firmly rooted in its place..”  Interesting form; extensive glazing, natural light, views; interesting fenestration; light wells, clerestory windows; exposed wood rafters and beams..

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image: © Tom Arban;  article: “Meadow House / Ian MacDonald Architect” 13 Dec 2012. ArchDaily. <;

Posted in Architects, Architecture, Architecture + Design, Contemporary Architecture, contemporary design, Design, Designalog, Green Design, Interiors, Residential Architecture | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

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