German architecture firm Peter Ruge Architekten’s latest project demonstrates that apartment buildings can be both stylish and comfortable without sacrificing on energy efficiency. The firm's Bruck House in southern China meets Passive House standards, which are among the most rigorous green building standards in the world. The apartment building achieves 95-percent energy savings over other comparable buildings of its size, and it aims to put to rest any lingering concerns that green buildings can't adapt to southern China's warm, damp climate.
The new Bruck apartment complex was designed as a place where families who are interested sustainable housing but are unsure about it can take it for a test drive. By living in the building for a short time, they can gain first-hand experience and have a better understanding of how green buildings differ from and are similar to conventional apartments. “This aims to reduce any prior reservations had towards the success of passive house design in extreme weather conditions,” explains Peter Ruge in his architect’s statement. The building consists of six executive suites and four three-bedroom apartments.
The building features triple-glazed windows with sculptural awnings that help to prevent the interior from overheating in the warmer months. The building’s most striking feature is the colored terracotta rods that form a screen on the facade to help keep the building cool. Construction on the building began in February, and it’s expected to be completed later this year.