OS House, The Environmentally Friendly House
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The AIA (American Institue of Architects) and COTE (Commitee on the Environment) have announced the Top Ten Green Projects for 2011. One of the projects is the OS House, designed by Johnsen Schmaling Architects. All of these green buildings, including this house become good example of the implementasion of environmentally friendly construction as a protection [...]
The AIA (American Institue of Architects) and COTE (Commitee on the Environment) have announced the Top Ten Green Projects for 2011. One of the projects is the OS House, designed by Johnsen Schmaling Architects. All of these green buildings, including this house become good example of the implementasion of environmentally friendly construction as a protection for the environment. This enviromentally friendly house also received LEED Platinum certification.
This eco friendly house is located in Racine, Wisconsin, near Lake Michigan. The location is a narrow infill lot, with a very staid neighbourhood. The local climate is changing extremely, very cold in winter, and very hot in summer. This condition needs a good strategy on applying the active and passive design. The sustainable residence was built in modern appeal, with capricious façade and sustainable amendments. It was also built with a moderate budget. It also provides a good combination between sustainable technology and the natural sources to achieve higher sustainability.
The green home building has a simple rectangular shape with a series of outdoor spaces, such as an entry court, elevated patios, and a main-level terrace. The design is based on massing studies, to test the building’s performance in relation to site constraints, program, accessibility to sunlight, shading, stormwater management, and vegetation.
The main level of this sustainable house has good transparency, allowing the visual link between the street and the lake, while the other houses have opaque nature. This glazing also provide optimum natural lighting at daylight. The upper level of the house is wrapped by a rainscreen system created from thin concrete panels suspended between a pair of horizontal steel channels, providing 8 inch deep ventilated envelope with superior protection from the elements. It is also completed with a series of floor-to-ceiling, coloring the unapologetic nod to the cheerful polychrome of the neighborhood’s Victorian homes. The house really takes the advantages of the lake breeze and the site’s solar exposure, allowing the natural cross ventialtion and natural lighting.
The sustainability is focused not only for the energy performance, but also the green construction and form. The construction of the house is small but has good durability and can perform good performance on energy dependency and also minimal ecological footprint. Smallness was the key for environmental and fiscal reasons. Some spaces provided in ordinary houses was combined into a space, or eliminated, such as combination between car garage and bike storage, no oversized bedrooms, individual bathrooms, etc.
Other sustainable features are also included, such as solar thermal panels completed with large ground source heat pump to control the indoor temperature. A compact structured plumbing system with low-flow fixtures are also available. There are two photovoltaic arrays (one on the roof, another in the backyard) to produce electricity on sunny days.Good insulation systems are also applied.
In fact, the sustainable development process of this house was done in a place where there are a lot of historic homes, the green design itself can provide a proof of green construction implementation, so they can also protect their neighboorhood’s environment. It also can be a new icon of the area, as it should be the modernest home there.