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Showing posts from July, 2007

Book - Pacific Modern

Pacific Modern

Well, after coming across some vouchers for the local book store, this was the logical choice. Fantastic articles, photos and plans for a number of Australian, Kiwi, Singaporean, Malaysian and Thai residences.
Vernacular construction but with the ever modern open plans and expanses of glass.
Hope to share thoughts on some of my readings over this week.


Christensen & Co. Arkitekter - Asseribo Home

Christensen &Co. Arkitekter
Holiday Home in Asserbo

This is a real Danish Bach. Located between the coast and Lake Arresø in Northern Sealand (note not New Zealand).

Perfect layout for roughing it at the beach, lake or river. The sleeping and bathrooms are built into the back wall meaning that all the areas that really need to be cosy and not as lit, are at the back. The kitchen takes the eastern (sunrise) wall of the main living area where everyone plays cards, drinks and chats till the early hours where all head off to their bunk rooms.
The Tortilla shell shape means that the rear wall (thermal mass) can temperate the back rooms, while the main living area with 3 sides of opening glass can become a large shaded deck in warm weather, or be heated by the fire in colder temps. By the look of all that glass I'm predicting it's like a 3/4 sleeping bag, you can use it only 3 out of the 4 seasons.

Michelle Kaufmann Designs - mkLotus

Michelle Kaufmann Designs

Well here it comes. MKD's latest work is due to be released in the coming months and on display at a show in the US.

Looks more compact than other versions but still with that Clerestory window action in the living area.

Notes from the West Coast Green website:

High Performance, Energy Efficient Building Systems Include:
- Green “Living” Roof
- Solar Power: This Home Uses 100% Solar Generated Power
- Rain and Groundwater Catchment System: Collected Water is Used for Irrigation
- Gray Water System: Collected Water from Sinks and Shower is Recirculated to Toilets
- Exterior Siding: Low-maintenance, Long-lasting Integral Color Cement Board by Cembonit and FSC Certified Wood
- Sheathing and Floor + Ceiling Framing: FSC Certified Wood
- Wall Assembly is SIPS (Structural Insulated Panels)
- High Performance, Energy Efficient Spray-in Open Cell Foam Insulation by Icynene
- On-demand Water Heater Provided by Noritz
- Energy Efficient HVAC System
- Double Pane, Low-E, Wo…


My thoughts on the heart of the house

I think the focal point of most homes, irregardless of the house layout tends to be the kitchen. It’s the one room (like the bathroom one hopes) that you’ll visit at least once a day. Hence the attention to detail and layout in kitchens deserves the effort companies are putting into it. Little things like correct sink height for end of day washing up, to handy storage of oils and spices by the stove, can make all the difference.

Delving through from a link on Mocoloco today revealed the Arclinea Mediterranean range.

This little number, pictured, with a central preparation bench leading to an in-kitchen dining area is great. The preparation triangle is a little stretched - I can’t see the fridge but the larger layout works for me.

Ideally there should be a preparation chain from fridge, to basin, to chopping board, to stove or oven. In the above, that would place the fridge beside the sink on the right. The final prep before cooking area faces out to …

Michelle Kaufmann Designs - Breezehouse & Sidebreeze

Michelle Kaufmann Designs
Breezehouse & Sidebreeze

Michelle Kaufmann Designs and their sister company mkConstructs produce IMHO some of the best prefab home designs around. Real attention to detail in the whole design floor plan, use of materials and emphasis on environmentally sound construction.


They’re Green
Rather than masses of fans and electric heaters, passive heating and cooling via breezeways and solid floor thermal masses for heat gain. They act like big warmth storage units, heating up during the day for release at night. Not to say at extremes the house would not require help, but the designs are really ‘sun focused’, cutting the assistance required. Being brought up with the windows and doors open all the time in summer, I can relate to a house that’s designed to let a breeze flow through, something that all houses in Brazil and northern New Zealand could do with.

The floor plans are simple with very few wet walls. With all of the mechanical, water an…

Urs Peter Flueckiger - House on 21st Street

Urs Peter Flueckiger
House on 21st Street (NYTimes)

Good so see an economical house built on a very tight buget, that's still great to live in.

NyTimes Article:
The first thing to know about the house Urs Peter Flueckiger built is that he did it for the startlingly low price of $51 a square foot, $50.87 to be exact, by using the kind of bulk metal siding usually associated with airplane hangars and toolsheds. The second thing to know is where he did it: here in the high plains of West Texas, one of the flattest, starkest, most sun-seared places on earth.

The land around Lubbock is so flat you can see every steeple, every water tower, every truck kicking up dust a mile away. On a clear day the sun burns like a klieg light, with little vegetation to filter it. Mr. Flueckiger likes to say West Texas is 80 percent sky and 20 percent earth.

As you might guess, Flueckiger (pronounced FLOO-kigger) is not a good old Texas name. Mr. Flueckiger — known as Upe (OO-pay) — comes fr…

BP Architectures - House Like a Village

BP Architectures
House Like a Village

Translation - In co-operation with his partner Jean Bocabeille in Paris offices "BP the Architectures" developed the idea. Instead of creating a large volume, why not produce an ensemble of several small cubes, which relates skillfully to Greek regional building traditions with modernistic style. The result: Six lime-white cubes, which group themselves like a tiny village around a central court.

Fish & Chips Haeuser Floor Plans PDF
Via: Haeuser

Crosson Clarke Carnachan Architects - Coromandel House

Crosson Clarke Carnachan ArchitectsCoromandel house
Looks like Arkinetia have beaten me to it, posting one of my favourite New Zealand houses.
A real Kiwi Bach!

The house was conceived as a container sitting lightly on the land for habitation or the dream of habitation. The intention was to reinterpret the New Zealand building tradition - the crafting of wood - the expression of structure, cladding, lining and joinery in a raw and unique way.

The construction is reminiscent of the "trip" or "rafter" dams common in the Coromandel region at the turn of last century. Heavy vertical structural members supporting horizontal boarding. The unadorned natural timber, a sustainable land renewable resource, provides a connection to nature and the natural. A simple mechanism to the deck allows the "box" to open up on arrival - providing a stage for living - and to close down on departure - providing protection.

The house has a simple rectangular plan that sits across th…