Lean, Green Sliver of a House by Luke Tozer

TreeHugger loves skinny houses; they don't take up much space and they really demonstrate the talents of the designers. Luke Tozer of Pitman Tozer Architects experiments on himself with only eight feet to work with, widening out in the rear. To top it off, as Building Design writes:

"But that’s not enough: the house had to have as low a carbon footprint as feasible. But setting yourself hard tasks has never provided an excuse for failure: you have to make it all work, and Tozer has come out of it all with a beautifully planned and built house — a tour de force of the architect’s skills."

So it has 150 foot boreholes for heat pumps, pumping into space insulated with lambswool. Under the garden is a rainwater storage tank which supplies the toilets. Neighbours are fighting proposed rooftop photovoltaics.

Tozer was not familiar with such technologies and was probably wise to try these things out before inflicting them on clients; I wish all architects could do this. Building Design suggests that the new technologies may lead to a new aesthetic:

"If this is a tendency towards a new brand of functionalism, it is one which as yet lacks a formal language of expression. Who knows if one will be developed? When the beauty is in the pipework, you bring the pipes to the fore, and when the beauty is organisational, you make external and internal volumes correspond. When the beauty is efficiency, things are harder to express and tend towards the evanescent: the frost on a well insulated roof lasts well after its profligate neighbours’ roofs are wet with meltwater — the fact is always there, its expression is fleeting but it is on the very borders of intention and artifice." ::BDOnline

Pictures by Nick Kane

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