The main passive solar principles of this design include:
● Orientation in relation to the sun’s relationship to the site.
● Utilize windows as solar collectors and cooling devices.
● Use simple geometric plan shapes.
● Installing high levels thermal insulation and air tighness.
● Provide effective thermal mass to store free solar heat.
A simple rectangle has been employed with the main body of the house orientated along the west to east axis therefore the front elevation is directly south facing maximizing the amount of annual solar gain.
The initial design idea was to retain and refurbish the existing outhouses however these structures proved un-fit for renovation. Therefore it was important to respect the qualities of these structures (i.e. the external design and detailing using narrow widths, simple forms, steep uninterrupted roofs, small apertures, traditional detailing including flush eaves and verges, and traditional local materials). To achieve this we echoed these principles in the design complimenting them with advancements in construction methods and modern living expectations (i.e. the simple geometric shape remains unchanged, small apertures on the north, east and west sides are coupled with larger areas of glazing on the south side to act as the main solar collector’s).
Materials are from a local palette to create a modern traditional aesthetic, although the outline approval states that the external finish should be render we have indicated site sourced stone from the existing demolished outhouses has been used to increase sustainable ideas.
All these design aspects will deeply root the proposal in the rural context not the 'suburban bungalows or chalets' which have imposed themselves on the landscape in recent times.