Located in the seaside suburb of Brighton South, the original building was a 1960’s solid brick, tiled roof house that was very energy inefficient To reduce their ongoing running costs, the client wanted improved insulation as well as natural, low-toxic materials in the build.
A new two-storey residence was constructed with the living areas at ground level and bedrooms above. The design incorporated a variety of natural, low waste and toxic-free materials such as the timber frame walls, well-insulated with rendered strawbale. Double glazing was also installed upstairs to minimise sound from a nearby train line. The client (a director of Solar Quotes) designed and installed a roof-top photovoltaic system and has reported zero electricity costs, even while regularly using a home office. He has also been impressed with the stability and comfort of internal temperatures.
Landscape design at the front of the property includes a rendered strawbale wall and plants selected specifically for the seaside environment and soil. In the backyard, a vegetable garden, fruit trees and salvaged grape vine are sustained from rain water harvested from the roof that is plumbed into the house.
More than 400 people visited this home in 2014 during the Sustainable House Day, and in 2015, an “Air Tightness” assessment was conducted by the CSIRO which concluded the design and detailing was to be of good quality.