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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

Goolwa Beach House in South Australia by Grieve Gillett

 
June 25th, 2013 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Grieve Gillett

The brief called for a low maintenance dwelling (used in the first instance as a weekend retreat and later to become a permanent dwelling) that would engage with its great location.  It is in a highly corrosive environment 250 metres from breaking surf.  The southern (rear) boundary of the site abuts a coastal reserve containing primary, secondary and tertiary dunes.  The house has been sited to maximise its relationship and connection to this wonderful dune landscape and the external materials chosen will weather to reflect the exposure of the site.

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

  • Architects: Grieve Gillett
  • Project: Goolwa Beach House
  • Location: Goolwa, South Australia
  • Software used: Sketchup and AutoCad

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

The climatic conditions are extremely variable featuring strong winds (bearing sand, salt and rain) from the south west quadrant, cooling on-shore breezes (SE to SW), hot northerlies and occasional breathless warm nights.  Accordingly the house has been designed to mitigate the less pleasant conditions while maximising the benefits of the benign weather events.  Timber decks to the north and south provide outdoor living opportunities in almost every kind of weather.  Variable shading to the northern deck provides amenity in both winter and summer while the solar panels provide shade to the southern deck.

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

Generally, construction materials have been selected for their low-corrosive qualities, durability, energy efficiency.They include a slab on ground (to take advantage of thermal mass), well insulated lightweight walls, simple roof form falling to one SS gutter to one downpipe to water tanks, natural anodised (25 microns) external door and window frames and external shading.  There is no air conditioning (heating via slow combustion wood fire). Having now been through two summers with days above 40 degrees it is clear that there is no need for air conditioning

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett


Promotional

This house is nestled into to coastal dunes 250 metres from the surf at Goolwa Beach in SA.  It has been designed to maximise its relationship and connection to this wonderful dune landscape. The climatic conditions are extremely variable featuring strong winds (bearing sand, salt and rain) from the south west quadrant, cooling on-shore breezes (SE to SW), hot northerlies and occasional breathless warm nights.  Accordingly the house has been designed to mitigate the less pleasant conditions while maximising the benefits of the benign weather events.

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

Timber decks to the north and south provide outdoor living opportunities in almost every kind of weather.  Variable shading to the northern deck provides amenity in both winter and summer while the solar panels provide shade to the southern deck. This project proves that air conditioning is unnecessary if houses can be designed to work with their environment employing simple principles of well controlled cross ventilation, good insulation, external shading and sun control.

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

Sustainable

This project demonstrates that air conditioning is unnecessary if houses can be designed to work with their environment employing simple principles of well controlled cross ventilation, orientation, good insulation, external shading and sun control.

Sustainable principles followed in this project included:

  • Slab on ground to take advantage of thermal mass of the ground;
  • Collection of rainwater from entire roof;
  • Low-embodied energy construction materials including timber framed construction for walls, timber framed upper level floor and roof framing;
  • Sunshading and sun control;
  • Solar hot water system (evacuated tube)

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

  • Timber cladding to external walls – certified plantation timber;
  • Good insulation (combination of air-cell sarking and batts in walls and roof);
  • Light coloured roofing;
  • Minimal use of external materials with coatings (roofing only);
  • Robust materials with non-corrosive qualities;
  • PV cells generating electricity which is fed back into the Grid.
  • Heating is provided by a slow combustion wood burning fire and one only small gas heater (LPG).

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

Jury Citation

Sustainable Architecture

Combining successful form making with an enthusiastic ESD approach doesn’t always make for successful form making.  This is not the case in this well considered beach side house.

With attention to detail, the Architect has produced a house that utilises natural materials that are both elegant in their simplicity, yet represent a strong approach to sustainable design.

This house incorporates good orientation, appropriate insulation, good natural light and provides abundant cross flow ventilation, providing a building that is comfortable, without the need for air conditioning.

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

The innovative use of a long PV array and a bank of hand operable horizontal screens, become strong design features in the overall composition of the house, beyond their place as sustainable inclusions.

Ultimately this house proves that an intelligent and creative approach incorporating sustainable principals and materials can produce an architecturally strong building, proud of its ESD inspired roots.

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

Image Courtesy © Grieve Gillett

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Categories: Autocad, Private House, SketchUp

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