This new two-storey, three bedroom house uses the device of the courtyard to define its architecture and for sustainable benefit. Flexible living spaces are built around two central courtyards, and connected by louvred galleries on both levels.

The courtyard and galleries allow sunlight and breezes to enter the centre of the house, allowing for a greater connection with the outdoors but maintaining privacy from the street and neighbouring properties.

The passive design improves the thermal comfort of the house, while construction materials and finishes have been selected for their innovation and contribution to reducing the overall carbon footprint and building cost.

An overall NATHERS rating of 7.9 stars has been achieved by the house, which utilises building materials and finishes that have low carbon footprints.

Key initiatives:

  • Passive Design using north and south courtyards to provide access to sun and light, allowing the house to benefit from cross ventilation
  • Careful placement of external and internal Insulated Ritek walls for thermal mass and a floor construction of tiled concrete take advantage of north sun to improve thermal comfort, and passively heat and cool the structure and internal spaces
  • Rooms designed to be easily subdivided and closed off with sliding doors, enabling them to be heated separately
  • External, operable aluminium louvres to the north and west facing windows increase active control of sunlight penetration
  • Louvred gallery is a clearly defined circulation spine to allow for sunlight and views to the courtyards and surrounds
  • Kingspan insulated roof provides high level insulation
  • Timber framed windows and doors designed to improve thermal efficiency and carbon footprint, with double glazing to reduce heat gain and loss
  • Water recycling through use of a grey water system and water storage with 2 x 3000L tanks
  • Landscape Design includes drought hardy plants like Mediterranean herbs and desert succulents watered by the water captured in the rainwater tanks

Photography by Sophie Solomon