Sanjay Gangal is the President of IBSystems, the parent company of AECCafe.com, MCADCafe, EDACafe.Com, GISCafe.Com, and ShareCG.Com.
Yin Yang House in Venice, California by Brooks + Scarpa Architects
May 5th, 2013 by Sanjay Gangal
Article source: Brooks + Scarpa Architects
This nearly net-zero energy live/work home and office was designed to function not only as a home and commercial office for both parents, but also as a private home for a large and growing family with several children. We sought to create a calm, relaxed and organized environment that emphasizes public space and changes the stereotype of a live/work home for a large family with young kids. Part private home and part business, the house is meant to serve as a place to entertain and a welcoming space for clients and teenagers.
It was designed to incorporate sustainable design as a way of teaching a green lifestyle and the offices are purposefully integrated with the home, making both the house and office feel large despite their small combined area. Passive measures, such as a very tight building envelope, reduce energy demand by more than 50 percent. The 12-kW solar system produces 100% of it’s electricity needs.
On the ground level, the home is organized around a series of courtyards and outdoor spaces that integrate with the interior of the house. These spaces are arranged to be only a single room deep to provide abundant natural light and ample ventilation to all rooms in the home. Facing the street the house appears to be solid. However, behind the recycled steel entry door is a courtyard, which reveals the indoor-outdoor nature of the house behind the solid exterior.
From the entry courtyard, the entire space to the rear garden wall can be seen. These spaces are designed for entertaining, and a 50-foot sliding glass door to the living room enhances the harmonic relationship of the main room, allowing the space to host many guests without feeling overcrowded and allowing the living space to expand to the outdoors. Like many features of the home, the spaces are multivalent and rich with meaning, performing several roles for formal, functional and experiential effect.
On the upper floor are the family’s bedrooms, which are intentionally designed to be very small and simple. The additional bedroom space, which would normally be found in a home of this size, has been allocated to larger public spaces on the ground level, emphasizing space for the family over individual private domains. Every bedroom opens to an adjacent green roof and an exterior deck leading to the rear yard activity space below.
The design maximizes the opportunities of the mild, marine climate with a passive cooling strategy using cross-ventilation and a thermal chimney. A large cantilevered roof overhang shades all the bedrooms from direct sunlight while providing ample natural light and ventilation.
Contact Brooks + Scarpa Architects