If you can build a cottage that's energy efficient, made from sustainable wood, and makes for a fantastic getaway in the great outdoors, awesome. But can you do it in just eight hours? The team at Mandala Homes in British Columbia decided to try, and pulled it off last month. The result is the Round Green Home.
Like the cottage, around 80% of the buildings Mandala produces are round. The circular form provides structural strength in rough weather, natural thermodynamics that negate the need for extra heating, and panoramic views, as well as something less tangible, the open feeling that comes from being in a space without corners.
"You're embraced by the space, says Rachel Ross of Mandala. (Technically, Mandala's structures aren't round but faceted, to make producing and shipping the components practical.)
The cottage was a side project for Mandala, which makes prefabricated homes for clients around the world, some of which are as large as 5,000 square feet. The customers are mostly DIYers and people who think outside the box, says Ross, as well as businesses like health centers.
For the Round Green Home, Mandala focused on making everything energy efficient and non-toxic. The cottage features a rainwater collection system and will eventually have a green roof. As with their other homes, they kept their materials as local as possible. British Columbia is home to a wealth of cedar, fir and pine trees; Mandala uses only FSC-certified wood.
Of course, using locally sourced wood loses much of its impact when the product is sold and shipped overseas.
Watch the cottage go up in this time lapse video: