It's not unheard of for homes to be without A/C in cooler climates, but to also be without heating requires some serious design skill. The East House in Byron Bay, south of Brisbane, is a sustainably renovated residence that takes full advantage of passive solar design. Built-Environment Practice utilized daylighting, thermal mass, a tight envelope and timber screening to eliminate the need for both A/C and heating in this coastal home.
The East House Byron Bay was originally a brick home constructed in the 1990s and the owners of the home wanted to transform it into a modern and sustainable residence that supported their passions, which includes yoga, surfing, cooking, music, and gardening. Located on a standard suburban block, the home sits just across the street from a 10-mile stretch of beach. Taking into consideration the home’s proximity to the ocean, the climate and the site’s orientation, Built-Environment Practice reorganized the home to have a more open layout and a strong connection with the outdoors. The three-bedroom, two-bath home includes a large outdoor entertainment area, a yoga platform, and an outdoor shower.
To achieve the energy performance and indoor comfort necessary to eliminate A/C and heating, Built-Environment Practice relied heavily on solar passive design. Overlapping spatial zones are formed with a thermal mass wall, timber screening and interlocking spatial ribbons. An east-west orientation provides optimum access to the sun for both passive solar heating and cooling. Shading, daylighting, and natural ventilation play important roles in the home’s energy efficiency. A small courtyard cut out into the home from the deck provides more space for gardening and a light well to inject more daylight inside.
Images ©David Taylor