If you want to turn a fairly ordinary building into a striking complex that doesn't require a lot of mechanical intervention to stay cool, then you might want to take notes from Smart Architecture. The South Korean design firm added sustainably-sourced Japanese cedar louvers to the southern and eastern facades of the Louver Haus in Daegu, ensuring that the four-story apartment building achieves optimum energy-efficiency and privacy.
Located in a dense metropolis of South Korea, the 400 square meter complex has six south-facing apartments and another open plan apartment that faces north. These are all organized around a concrete staircase with interesting vertical cables that lead to skylights punched into the roof. The latter intervention ensures plenty of natural lighting.
The louvers mitigate solar gain and create a sense of intimacy in an otherwise packed neighborhood, which in turn helps to increase the building’s overall energy efficiency. But they also have a cosmetic aspect as they allow for a certain amount of aesthetic flexibility. Shutters open and close, disguising hidden windows and even a couple of balconies, so residents can control how much air and light enters the interior.