Sanjay Gangal is the President of IBSystems, the parent company of AECCafe.com, MCADCafe, EDACafe.Com, GISCafe.Com, and ShareCG.Com.
Big Rock in Baja California Sur, Mexico by fabrikg
November 28th, 2017 by Sanjay Gangal
Article source: fabrikg
Located at 800 m (2 624 ft.) above sea level, in front ot the Sea of Cortez. Big Rock is on top of the foothills of Laguna Hills at the East Cape in Baja California Peninsula. The site is a twenty minute away off the grid [9 km] from the nearest town and is accessed by a dirt road. Part of trail that goes along the East Cape coast. The location of the plot it brings life to the actual architecture. The aim was to embrace and respect the site, the granite huge rocks and be part of them as main Architectural /Landscape element. So we define the boundaries within this rocks and the natural survey. The rest came with the solar studies to define the right location for each program, view and scale.
The visibility to the south of the bay it can’t get better than this location; the biggest rock define our base to locate the master bedroom to eastern horizon; and to the south, the main building that holds the public area is terraced to the ocean and mountain view to the west.
The media temperature in winter is above 28º C and in summer around 38º C. this bring us the earth as a natural insulation base to build housing projects in the area. So the thermal mass will stay cool during the hot days combined with a natural cross ventilation. Generating a comfort zone inside the rooms of 23º-26º C.
We have implementation also a basic culture to build with the surrounding materials. Earth, Sand, Stones. With the incorporation of concrete as a base structure to use as slabs.
The rammed earth technique implemented is also stabilized with 10% of Portland cement and steel reinforcement with rebar since we Area located in an earthquake zone.
The design of the house was influenced by the inherent building in desert areas, concerns of environmental impact and cultural sensitivity, and careful observation of local materials, climate and landscape. The architecture is both timeless and contemporary. The buildings are constructed primarily of earth, in the tradition of rammed earth the main living areas and with brick the garage and patio. With the layout we accomplish an integration of the program to the natural survey with the 3 volumes generating a central patio distribution.
The walls have been introduced to let in natural light and to visually connect with the surrounding landscape. Rammed earth was quarried locally and Rammed on site providing us a very low carbon foot print construction using with what you can find in the desert land. Sand and soils mixed with some cement as well as a low maintenance life to the house. The project was conceived to be part of the environment with low impact and to be projected with solar passive design using the walls as main insulation factor and cross ventilation to cool the interiors. The core courtyard that provides us a micro weather condition cooling down the place with sea breeze flow and the use of lattices in the walls that allow this natural flow.
Because of its remote location, the site is off the grid all Power and electricity are stored by solar energy that’s used to provide hot water and to charge solar batteries.
No original botanical species were harmed or killed during the construction process and we actually select the most representative to define our boundaries. The rest were relocated so the site will look as it never had to deal with the dirty construction process of 10 months.
So we can say this is basically what defines our architecture intervention as Big Rock on Laguna Hills Lot 22. Love. Care & Spirit.