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Off-Grid Cliff House Harnesses the Elements for Self Sufficiency
Posted By Andrew Michler On April 5, 2010 @ 6:30 pm In Architecture,Sustainable Building | 3 Comments
Off the grid  means many things to many people. The Cliff House  on Muskoka Lakes, Ontario, interprets “off the grid” as grand self-sufficiency . Designed by Altius Architecture Inc , the home’s form is both integrated in the landscape’s mass and floats above it using cantilevers and floor-to-ceiling glass. The Cliff House plays with all the elements — stone, water, fire, earth, wind, and sun. Read on to find out how!
Sitting  on a ledge above a lake, the mass of this 3200 sq. ft. home echoes that of the large granite boulder it rests upon. The local granite is brought inside to act as a thermal mass  for the two fireplaces that bookend the living space. In the summer, prevailing breezes and thermal vent stack, along with a green roof , keep the building naturally cooled . The sun plays the key role of providing electricity thanks to a solar electric system, storage batteries, and a power inverter . There is also a solar thermal system that uses evacuated tubes  to heat both the in-floor heating and solar thermal storage tanks.
There are a host of other sustainable features  but what is really striking is the home’s sense of relaxation on the land. Its sensitivity in integrated design  is accomplished by using design elements and materials that not only look exceptional but enhance the performance of the space.
Via World Architecture News 
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URL to article: http://inhabitat.com/off-grid-cliff-house-harnesses-the-elements-for-self-sufficiency/
URLs in this post:
 Off the grid: http://www.inhabitat.com/index.php?s=off+the+grid
 Cliff House: http://altius.net/2009/11/cliff-house/
 self-sufficiency: http://www.inhabitat.com/2010/03/09/underwater-skyscraper-is-a-self-sufficient-city-at-sea/
 Altius Architecture Inc: http://altius.net
 Sitting: http://www.inhabitat.com/?attachment_id=100206
 thermal mass: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermal_mass
 green roof: http://www.inhabitat.com/green-roof/
 naturally cooled: http://www.wbdg.org/resources/naturalventilation.php
 power inverter: http://www.outbackpower.com/products/sinewave_inverter/off_grid/
 evacuated tubes: http://www.daviddarling.info/encyclopedia/E/AE_evacuated_tube_collector.html
 integrated design: http://www.inhabitat.com/2006/09/13/gb101_conc/
 World Architecture News: http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/index.php?fuseaction=wanappln.projectview&upload_id=13020
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