Sustainable Green Thomas Eco-House by Designs Northwest Architects
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Thomas Eco-House is a sustainable green house designed by Designs Northwest Architects. This green architecture building is located in the Cascade foothills of Washington State, in the crown of the hill, surrounded by forestry lands. Energy efficiency, low maintenance, and sustainable design become important concerns. The green infrastructure is a four stories building with different function [...]
Thomas Eco-House is a sustainable green house designed by Designs Northwest Architects. This green architecture building is located in the Cascade foothills of Washington State, in the crown of the hill, surrounded by forestry lands. Energy efficiency, low maintenance, and sustainable design become important concerns.
The green infrastructure is a four stories building with different function for each level. The main level is used for general living space, including kitchen, living room, dining room. Floor-to-ceiling glass openings are provided to maximize the view. The floor plan for this level is open, providing wide feeling of the space. The private space, including the bedroom and a reading loft, is located upstairs. The reading loft is opened to the living room below. To connect these levels, there is a fire pole provided, in addition of the stair tower that will connect the observation tower named “Bubble”, used for maximize the view, including night sky view. The lower level, which is a daylight level, is used for guest space. The roof deck can be accessed from the Bubble.
To perform high sustainability for this sustainable house, some strategies were applied. For the construction, the house is formed by insulated concrete form (ICF) construction which consists of two layers of rigid form insulation between which concrete is poured. This type of construction may reduce 44% of the required heating energy, and 33% of required cooling energy compared to the ordinary house. The ICF system also provide possibility of stucco application directly over the exterior insulation, which will provide durable and low maintenance finishing.
Geothermal heat pump is used to provide more efficient heating and cooling of this green and sustainable building. It is supported by hydronic heating system also which may use 30% less energy than an equivalent forced air system. The heat pump may be 45% more efficient than a traditional heat pump which uses ambient air. As alternative energy source, it is possible to use solar panels or wind turbine energy to power the house.
This sustainable architecture design applied passive solar design, which solar exposure to the interior is focused from the southern windows . The concrete floors will act as thermal mass storage which will store the heat during daylight, and release it throughout the evening. Motorized solar shade system will help to protect the house from over sun-heating. Natural ventilation is provided from the stairway, by a solar chimney effect, also from the Bubble.
This green building architecture looks very beautiful with simple building form with high sustainability strategy applied.