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The Direction of Sustainable Architecture

Why are people generally not sufficiently interested in solar design of their homes? Why don’t we collectively understand what the implications are for planet Earth and Climate Change to the point of doing more proactively to address it? The persistence of uncomfortable denial and sceptical arguments has promulgated slow progress. Furthermore, the cause of inaction is actually against the national interest.

Media has only created confusion, playing off right and left political ideologies, which have not helped diligence.

But, having a naturally comfortable energy efficient home that maximizes the use of solar energy in a cost effective manner, is unrelated to political ideology, surely. It really is sustainable economics at its best.

I have always believed that lack of understanding of the science, and the economic benefits not only to the community but the individual householder themselves, is the key understanding that will help change the way we build.

Eco Compound

At Ecotect-Architects we have been at this for 45 years, and although we have had personal success and many happy clients, it has been painfully slow becoming mainstream, despite many Government initiatives in changing compliance systems and highlighting possibilities through awards and publicity.

So we ask ourselves, what is the problem? Well, I believe it is cultural and history shows it takes three or four generations for entrenched ideas to change. However, the current situation with Human Impact on Climate Change (HICC) will not allow this amount of time to solve the concern for the 21st century. We can only afford two generations before permanent changes need to occur. Built environment contributions are a major potential contributor.

By 2050, passive solar design, combined with the use of PV solar systems and smart technologies for hot water, supplementary space heating and cooling systems, could deliver 10% reductions of emissions from the built environment alone. By the end, if it became the norm, it would deliver up to 35% alone from the built environment changes. This will occur from technology changes, passive solar/energy efficiency designing, and of course a consciousness and use-culture of building occupants and smarter control systems.

Ecotect-Architects, being one of the pioneers, still excel in providing architectural services, advice and technical consulting in the field. Many years ago, we realised that although densification of cities around major transport nodes is needed for a better efficiency and lower average emissions per person, global population is the elephant in the room for addressing Climate Change.

The ‘population ponzi’ as a driver of business as usual economics is no longer working. It is a critical part of the problem of an unsustainable world.

We need new innovative jobs in sustainable living environments to supply healthy food, clean water, comfort and shelter in communities that support positive values.

Ecologically Sustainable Designed (ESD) buildings, placed in well master planned precincts, provides all of those attributes.

To talk sustainable design – get in touch with us at any time.

 

Love The Life You Live

Described as a garden sanctuary for living at its best, on the corner of Congdon and Railways Streets in Cottesloe will be a development like no other seen in Perth.

Ilios, a project by The Swanbourne Village Trust designed by Garry Baverstock and James Shaw from Ecotect Architects, promises to deliver some of the most stunning, and environmentally rewarding homes on the market. With over 50% allocation to gardens, roof terraces and courtyards, the development will see nine residences over five separate buildings all set around a central courtyard, with both 2 bedroom and 3 bedroom homes available.

What’s unique about Ilios is despite its forward-thinking design, it targets sustainability and climate change; offering passive solar design, shading and north orientation, natural lit spaces and window and door openings planned for optimised air flow. The project has also integrated, where appropriate, the use of recycled materials and double glazed windows.

As well as the obvious recreational use, the roof terraces have been designed to moderate temperatures.  As such, each home will have either a private roof top garden or generous terrace/alfresco area, with communal areas including a landscaped rooftop terrace, underground parking and storage, meeting and function room, vegetable garden and sun room.

With the current world pandemic and unpredictable economic vulnerability due to COVID-19, construction has been pushed back from our previous commencement date that was to ensure a completion of late 2021. Correspondence of these changes will be made available as they come to hand, but to discuss your options and secure one of these luxury and exclusive residences, contact Jon Bahen on 0419 816 776 for more information.

 

 

Hempcrete Home

Built with a focus on natural materials including hempcrete, this small home near Margaret River will provide Perth couple, Andrea and Holger with a comfortable, healthy, low-bills retirement.

Featured in the latest Sanctuary Magazine, the house – designed by our very own James Shaw – captures the winter sun and keeps the residents comfortable at any time of the year with minimal energy use. Because of the thermal regulation of Hemp, they won’t even require an air conditioner in summer!

Want to find out more? Check out the story in the new Sanctuary Magazine – Autumn Edition, or contact us!

Retrofitting your Home

COVID-19 has forced people home for most of this year. What better time to fix up your house to save energy and use you free time productively.

Post COVID-19, we predict that there will need to be a price hike in energy bills until governments implement smarter integration of solar power into the grid.

 

Ecotect-Architects can help in many ways:

  1. Advisory service by skype or zoom to work out the best ways you can maximize DIY and engage experts contractors to help you with the work (socially distanced of course). The first step is to take some photos and jot down some ideas and questions you would like to discuss. Having a copy or a diagram of your home would be very useful.
  2. One of our associates will make contact and book an online session and discuss the fee involved.
  3. Once the session is completed the verbal advice may suffice for simple action plans but a brief report can be sent and a fee proposal for follow up architectural work can be sent.
  4. At the same time as making the home more energy efficient and effetely use solar energy, both passive and actively using PV technology.
  5. It may be a good time to renovate and add the spare room at the same time, whereby drawings can be done and submitted for approval and assistance with quotes given by the associate.

You’ll find the service valuable and surprisingly affordable and will pay for itself from energy savings in quick time. Please contact us for more information.