We’re quite taken by Strohhaus in Eschenz, Switzerland. Designed by Zurich-based architect Felix Jerusalem, this home masterfully combines prefab with sustainable materials, primarily prefabricated strawboard panels that provide affordable, environmentally sound insulation. Jerusalem exploits the strawboard with translucent siding giving the structure a clean, modern aesthetic that showcases the material.

Continue reading below
Our Featured Videos

A corrugated plastic exterior protects the compressed strawbale which is structural and serves as the primary heat and sound insulation. Jerusalem used three variations of the strawboard throughout the design. Lightweight panels are in place for thermal and acoustic insulation, middle weight for interior walls and a heavy panel is used for structural elements. All are emission free, formaldehyde free and fully recyclable.

The clean lines of the exterior translate to the inside with a simple layout that serves three bedrooms, living room, kitchen, bath and loft – all with a bounty of natural daylight. Inside, Strohhaus takes advantage of the high solar thermal performance of concrete using the material for the home’s central core. The whole package sits just above the site on piers making less earthwork part of its lighter footstep.