Toronto-based BORTOLOTTO designed an energy-efficient daylit house in an idyllic rural community just outside of Ontario’s capital. The King’s Cross House combines traditional ranch mansard roofs with a modern sculptural interior that creates a dialogue with the surrounding landscape, while the natural properties of the materials provide optimal protection from the region’s harsh elements.
The house is situated on the footprint of a previous building and is incomparable in design and performance with its predecessor. Protective and sheltering, it is built to endure the regional climate. While its front façade creates a more private space, the glazed and undulating rear façade opens the home to the neighboring forest and allows natural light to reach the most remote corners of the interior.
Imperceivable from the outside, split-levels naturally expand and contract, creating movement and intimacy. The gentle ceiling curves seem to be carved into a landscape and reiterate as the floor that holds the bedrooms spills into the kitchen.
The building materials create a tight envelope that endures the regional climate. A triple layered slate, supported by stainless steel, covers the front façade, while operable glazing of the south and east facades maximizes natural daylight. The design features radiant flooring, ground source heating and photovoltaic panels that help the building reduce its dependency on non-renewable technology. Thanks to its energy-efficient materials and smart design, the house received an Energy Efficiency Rating of 80.