Given a low budget to produce a high-end final product, Design + Architecture’s #OURHOUSEWANDAL, situated in Rockhampton, Queensland is a sustainable family home that is considerate and conscious of its surroundings.
Sitting on a sloped block of land that influenced much of the design, the house is elevated slightly off the ground to compensate for the gradient. The minimal design encompasses two storeys, the first an open-plan, functional living space that opens out to a natural rainforest garden, and the second containing 3 bedrooms, a bathroom and a breezeway that runs across the length of the home that allows for natural ventilation.
Tasked with a brief that consisted of a specific idea and philosophy of using low maintenance and cost effective materials that were sustainably strong, Design + Architecture utilised zinc cladding on the exterior walls and room as well as fibre cement on the lower level. The elevation of the house allows plenty of light to penetrate the large floor-to-ceiling windows and doors & promotes cross ventilation throughout the interior, which was a major part of the brief, with the homeowners looking for a more natural heating and cooling system, as opposed to ducted air conditioning.
Different in character to conventional Queensland homes, #OURHOUSEWANDAL’s skillion roof and overhanging eaves make it both a unique entity and a sustainably ventilated home. The back deck also minimises the need for artificial heating and cooling and makes the most of its view to the garden at the end of the block.
The interior contains a range of unorthodox design components, such as a sub-polished floor, and poly carbonated sheeting used above bedroom walls to provide effect and indirect lighting.
The three bedrooms fitted into the second storey reflects the young family’s lifestyle, that has seen them become used to using minimal space. The amount of space has led to the family being conscious in what they collect, looking to keep the areas of the house as open and as modest as possible, to take advantage of the house’s prime position, to be able to connect to the outdoors distraction free.
Aware of the need to provide high quality homes that are extremely sustainable on a low budget, Design + Architecture have been able to produce #OURHOUSEWANDAL to the design brief of the client in a way that has allowed the young family to relax and grow in a unique dwelling that encompasses nature with modern architecture. Working within these confines can prove difficult, but the firm has shown a way forward in low budget sustainable design, allowing for future homeowners to access elite architectural practice irrespective of expense.