House of the Year: Brit Contenders

The long list (25 contenders) for House of the Year 2007 has been announced and there are several British sustainable houses included. The criteria are originality, innovation and sustainability, as well as consideration of the context. The Salt House (pictured) is a beach house at the end of a row of timber-boarded fishermen's houses overlooking the sea. It can be jacked up to a higher level to survive long-term, future rises in the water level, something that is becoming more likely on seashores around the coast. It is a prototype for flood-proof residential construction.

Focus House was designed as a low cost, low energy, low maintenance alternative to the standard family house. Built on a wedge shaped piece of land, it is a difficult adaptation to the street of Victorian houses, yet uses sliding glass windows, sustainable materials, has a very low carbon footprint and a zen garden. The Lighthouse is Britain's first zero-carbon house with solar panels, rainwater harvesting, biomass boilers and a windcatcher for ventilation. And the six finalists...

The Long House is the only British contender to make it onto the short list of 6; it is located in a very exclusive area of London, is mainly one storey high, with an underground lap pool (pictured) and seen from the street as only a long wall.

Salt Point House in upstate New York sounds like it is truly environmental and sustainable, with all of the building and finish materials were selected for function, durability, and economy. The walls, floors, and ceilings are all clad in economical and durable maple plywood. Exterior stainless steel screen panels on the north and south facades are held a few inches off the main structure to protect the house from the extremes of both the summer sun and the winter winds. The perforated screens shade the exterior face of the house.

This fantasy house in Formentara, Spain is perched on a field in splendid isolation. Also on the shortlist: a house in Croatia , one in Japan and South Africa. :: Worldarchitecturenews Via :: Evening Standard

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