Wrap-Around Haus concept

Passivhaus Competition

Integrating interior with exterior through futuristic design

A retreat from the hassle and pressures of everyday life, this house embraces the beauty of the natural world all year round. Situated on the edge of a lake, this proposed 3 bed house is at one with the water and the surrounding landscape. When considering our approach to the design of this building, there were a few fundamental characteristics that we wanted to include:

  • A futuristic design and construction.
  • All living accommodation on one level to achieve full accessibility and flexibility.
  • Develop a closer connection to the lake. That’s why the house sits on the water rather than next to it; imagine the joy of hearing the water and wildlife outside your bedroom when waking up in the morning, with the rippling light reflected off the lake and onto your ceiling.
  • Keep it simple. A lakeside retreat should echo the beautiful plans of other houses in LA, such as the Farnsworth House and the flowing design of Glenn Murcutt. All these examples aspire to connect the interior with the external environment.
  • Distinctive architectural character. This has been achieved with a ‘wrap-around’ floor, cascading from wall to roof, defining the public and private sides of the house. The public face is more enclosed and protective and the private area is open and faces the lake.
  • Connect inside and out. This has been achieved by including large sliding glass doors to all rooms, leading to a three metre wide balcony which is continuous along the south and west elevations.
  • Be equipped for all seasons. An equally wide overhang provides shade in the summer and shelter from the rain. We liked the idea of the balcony being a fantastic amenity in any weather conditions.
  • Super insulation: the u-value of the roof/wall is 0.086 w/(m2K), the floor is 0.092w/(m2K), and the glazing averages out at 0.8w/(m2K).
  • An airtight construction, no more than 0.6 air changes per hour.
  • Controlled ventilation to provide pre-warmed air in the winter via a heat exchanger.