Daylighting

New Window Skins Block Sunlight in Summer and Let it Through in Winter

New Window Skins Block Sunlight in Summer and Let it Through in Winter

Photo via Shutterstock Windows have one basic limitation: They let light in, but if you want to keep light out you have to use blinds or a curtain. Researchers at Japan's National Institute of

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Plasma Studio’s Crystalline Xi’An Greenhouse Sparkles in the Sun

Plasma Studio’s Crystalline Xi’An Greenhouse Sparkles in the Sun

To access Plasma Studio's greenhouse in Xi’an, visitors must take a boat across a lake. The glazed structure is shaped like a horseshoe with an open-air courtyard in the middle. The greenhouse features

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Sou Fujimoto’s Nebulous 2013 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion Opens to the Public in London

Sou Fujimoto’s Nebulous 2013 Serpentine Gallery Pavilion Opens to the Public in London

Sou Fujimoto is the 13th—and youngest—architect to be invited to design a summer pavilion for the garden, which will host a variety of events all summer long. Fujimoto's works are known for their play

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Kengo Kuma’s Layered Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center Soaks Up Sunlight in Tokyo

Kengo Kuma’s Layered Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center Soaks Up Sunlight in Tokyo

Kengo Kuma´s Asakusa Culture Tourist Information Center is located on a busy corner in Tokyo near the ancient Buddhist temple Sensō-ji. It's made mainly from glass and wood, and its interiors are airy

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The Nest: A Minimalist Steel “Green Box” Home that Puts Nature First in Vietnam

The Nest: A Minimalist Steel “Green Box” Home that Puts Nature First in Vietnam

With a tiny footprint of just 40 square meters, The Nest is framed with 90 x 90 steel columns and 30 x 30 steel beams and clad with corrugated metal sheets an attractive white mesh grid that encourages

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Minimalist Tred Avon River House Floats Above a Changing Maryland Landscape

Minimalist Tred Avon River House Floats Above a Changing Maryland Landscape

Comprised of three volumes, the Tred River residence has a 36 foot central volume, a 10 foot entry door and side lights, and a contrasting 12 foot volume that plays host to the garage and other service

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Elephant Room Gets an Award-Winning Eco Upgrade at Wellington Zoo in New Zealand

Elephant Room Gets an Award-Winning Eco Upgrade at Wellington Zoo in New Zealand

Tasked with this challenging adaptive reuse project, Assembly Architects was careful to minimize their environmental impact by using the earth excavated in the marquee's walls and the pathway leading to

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Windowless Caja Oscura Home Opens up Like a Giant Pac-man in Rural Paraguay

Windowless Caja Oscura Home Opens up Like a Giant Pac-man in Rural Paraguay

Located roughly 15km outside of central Asunción, the tiny home has a footprint of just 85 square meters. The base consists of concrete and locally-sourced stone, a cantilevering stone staircase leads to

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HGA Architects’ West Valley Campus at College of the Desert Will Produce More Energy than it Consumes

HGA Architects’ West Valley Campus at College of the Desert Will Produce More Energy than it Consumes

College of the Desert is a two-year community college with about 3,400 full-time students that is located in the Coachella Valley. Renewable energy production will be a major focus of the

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Uplifting Vertical Garden with 4,000 Plants Rises in Mexico City’s Casa CorManca

Uplifting Vertical Garden with 4,000 Plants Rises in Mexico City’s Casa CorManca

The narrow Casa CorManca designed by Paul Cremoux Studio is a three story residence built on a 1894 square foot plot in Mexico City. South-facing, the slate-clad house has an interior courtyard, and the

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Schmidt Hammer Lassen’s Ny Anstalt Prison Heals With a Connection to Light & Nature

Schmidt Hammer Lassen’s Ny Anstalt Prison Heals With a Connection to Light & Nature

Schmidt Hammer Lassen's winning design for the prison in Nuuk, the capital of Greenland is an 8,000 sq m facility that plays on the contrast of roughness and the beauty of nature. While designing the

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Xiangxiangxiang: China’s First Boutique Shipping Container Hotel Opens its Doors

Xiangxiangxiang: China’s First Boutique Shipping Container Hotel Opens its Doors

Xiangxiangxiang Boutique Container Hotel is made from 35 repurposed shipping containers, and is located in the tourist area of Tianxia Duchenghuang. Featuring exterior and interior spaces for work and

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Hiroshima’s Optical Glass House Hides a Secret Garden Behind its Glazed Façade

Hiroshima’s Optical Glass House Hides a Secret Garden Behind its Glazed Façade

The Optical Glass House sits among tall buildings in downtown Hiroshima. Its glazed façade was hand-made made from 6,000 high-transparency glass blocks that are from borosilicate, a raw material

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Atelier Oslo’s Lanternen Pavilion is Made From Sustainable Norwegian Wood

Atelier Oslo’s Lanternen Pavilion is Made From Sustainable Norwegian Wood

Visible from afar, Lanternen serves as a meeting point and market shelter, as well as a space for informal music concerts and other performances. It stands on four stilts that are made from local

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Gorgeous Yingst Retreat Nestled in a Michigan Forest has a Sod-Roofed Sauna

Gorgeous Yingst Retreat Nestled in a Michigan Forest has a Sod-Roofed Sauna

Black outbuildings that act as truncated garages line the path leading to the main house defined by white masonry boxed in by two bookends of sorts. Inside, exposed timber columns lend a natural aesthetic

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Oshatz Architects’ Wooden Wilkinson Residence Towers Amidst the Treetops

Oshatz Architects’ Wooden Wilkinson Residence Towers Amidst the Treetops

With a top floor surrounded by treetops, The Wilkinson Residence evokes the feeling of being in a tree house. It’s curvy exterior is covered with different wood tiles and some metal parts that get

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Bercy Chen Studio’s Cylindrical Boat House in Austin Has its Own Waterfall

Bercy Chen Studio’s Cylindrical Boat House in Austin Has its Own Waterfall

Bercy Chen Studio’s one-of-a-kind shelter consists of two elliptical floors that are joined by a swirling staircase. The lower level has a wooden deck mainly used for lounging next to the water and

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Kagithane Gardens: JDS Architects Unveil Green-Roofed Daylit Office for Istanbul

Kagithane Gardens: JDS Architects Unveil Green-Roofed Daylit Office for Istanbul

Kagithane Gardens is a premier office and retail project that is designed to catalyze a new business district in Kagithane in the northern part of Istanbul. The M-shaped building rises up from courtyards

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Fujiwaramuro Architects’ House in Hanoura is Surrounded by Artificial Hills and Breezy Rice Fields

Fujiwaramuro Architects’ House in Hanoura is Surrounded by Artificial Hills and Breezy Rice Fields

Perhaps the most unique aspect of this house is a number of small hills that surround it and provide a depth perception to the flat landscape when looking out. A nice detail is that the architects made

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Lenbachhaus Museum Reopens in Munich with Foster + Partners’ Jewel Box Addition

Lenbachhaus Museum Reopens in Munich with Foster + Partners’ Jewel Box Addition

The main wing of the Lenbachhaus Museum was built in 1891 as a studio and villa for the artist Franz von Lenbach, and several additions have been added over the past 100+ years. In the latest set of

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Christopher Polly Carves Vaulted Ceilings and Light Wells into Sydney’s Cosgriff House

Christopher Polly Carves Vaulted Ceilings and Light Wells into Sydney’s Cosgriff House

Expanding the Cosgriff House in Annandale without undue environmental impact was a driving force behind this green renovation, which is why Christopher Polly Architect did everything possible to "embed

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The Slabs: Gorgeous Italian Pavilion Crowned with a Sky Garden Proposed for Milan Expo 2015

The Slabs: Gorgeous Italian Pavilion Crowned with a Sky Garden Proposed for Milan Expo 2015

Although the glass and marble structure is something of an engineering feat, the materials aren't very soul-enriching, which is why MenoMeno Piu and BE.ST literally incorporated foliage into the design.

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Apelle: Boat-Like Home Stays Warm With Geothermal Energy During the Finnish Winters

Apelle: Boat-Like Home Stays Warm With Geothermal Energy During the Finnish Winters

Apelle is a long and lean building that opens up to the surrounding nature. The interiors are open plan and multi-functional, a common tradition in Finnish architecture dubbed “tupa” or “pirtti”.

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Brilliant Energy-Generating JF-Kit House is Powered by People!

Brilliant Energy-Generating JF-Kit House is Powered by People!

JF-Kit is part pop-up gym, part self-sufficient off-grid home. The interior features a line of ‘domestic fitness furniture’ that enables residents to produce energy by pedaling a bike, doing sit

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Modern Green Roofed Casa MM Makes the Most of Brazil’s Spectacular Landscape

Modern Green Roofed Casa MM Makes the Most of Brazil’s Spectacular Landscape

Designed by Studio MK27’s Marcio Kogan, Casa MM boasts a luscious grass green roof that acts as insulation and also a continuation of the landscape. Due to the extreme sunny weather, the walls are

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Chinoiserie: A Breezy Pop-Up Shelter Inspired by Mongolian Yurts

Chinoiserie: A Breezy Pop-Up Shelter Inspired by Mongolian Yurts

Constructed as part of a workshop organized by Rainbow Dream, Chinoiserie is a translucent space for relaxing and meeting people. The space measures 180 square feet and it's built from locally sourced

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Historic Horse Stables Converted into a Contemporary Home in the UK

Historic Horse Stables Converted into a Contemporary Home in the UK

After winning the 1946 Grand National, Lovely Cottage came home to enjoy a well-deserved rest in his stables on the outskirts of Winchester. Despite the dilapidation, the long, one-story block building

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The Angelic Organics Learning Center in Illinois is Made from Whole Trees and Straw Bale

The Angelic Organics Learning Center in Illinois is Made from Whole Trees and Straw Bale

We've featured Gunderson and Whole Trees Architecture here on Inhabitat before. The innovative firm uses unmilled tree trunks and branches as structural components of buildings, which is much more

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House Uesslingen: Swiss Prefab Home Topped With a Sawtooth Roof

House Uesslingen: Swiss Prefab Home Topped With a Sawtooth Roof

Limited by planning laws, Spillmann Echsle found a way to incorporate the iconic pitched roof into the Uesslingen house design while also giving it a contemporary spin that references factories in the

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Atelier CMJN Unveils Plans for Sustainable Great Fen Visiting Center in the UK

Atelier CMJN Unveils Plans for Sustainable Great Fen Visiting Center in the UK

Atelier CMJN recently unveiled plans for the new Great Fen Visitor Center, a wooden sustainable structure set halfway between the wetlands and dry lands in Cambridgeshire, UK. The organic shelter is made

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