Gallery: Gorgeous Ruby Springs Prefab Features Hydraulic Shade Screens ...

Side view of the home near an irrigation ditch.

The home acts as a big filter, or a frame, for the landscape, and each window and opening captures a specific view in its cross hairs — whether that be the fields in front of the house or the mountains in the distance. Roll-up, garage style windows allow the home to turn inside out, and shade screens on the south can move at a moment’s notice. Off-the-shelf hydraulic actuators can raise or lower the screens for variations of shade and views. The home can respond quickly and easily to changes in light and weather conditions, as well as to the desired view.

In order to give such an open house a low carbon footprint, and to keep it as close to net zero as possible, Medicine Hat Inc decided to focus their efforts not so much on a tight, high performance envelope, but instead on renewable energy. The theory being that if the energy is clean and renewable, then it doesn’t really matter how much of it you use. Many may differ with this opinion, but if an owner is willing to pay for a larger PV system in order to have their dream home and still have a net zero home, then we commend them. Besides the PV system on the roof, the home, when closed, relies on geothermal heating and cooling and propane is used for cooking.

Fabricated into sections, modules and sub-assemblies in Bozeman, MT, the Ruby Springs Prefab was then transported to the remote site near Sheridan. Prefabrication significantly reduced the number of trips to and from the site as well as transportation of the materials, contractors and tradesmen. Materials are all low VOC, the flooring is cork, reclaimed Douglas Fir is used on the trim, doors, furniture, and exterior shade screens, and finally all the windows have lowE coatings.

+ Medicine Hat Inc

Images ©Will Brewster courtesy of Medicine Hat Inc.


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  1. nullcorp September 5, 2011 at 2:18 pm

    Looks like Stephanie Sandston isn’t beyond using friends (or an alter-ego) to drum up business.

    I think the major error in the article is not even mentioning where the hell Ruby Springs is located. But thanks to Stephanie Sandston’s shamless self-promotional efforts, I now know that it’s in Montana.

  2. regina TM August 31, 2011 at 7:57 pm

    The interior designer Stephanie Sandston, who is based in Bozeman, Montana, did an incredible job with this project, which she originated–even first constructing it in her yard. Even the curtain fabric is her design. Her creative hand is on this whole project, and she deserves some credit!

  3. carol worthington August 31, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    You should have mentioned the Bozeman-based interior designer Stephanie Sandston, who brought this whole project together. Her work here is stunning!

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