Location: Piedmont, Italy
Project developed for Sangallo Bioedilizia
The E house is generated as a monolithic structure in the shape of the archetypal house. The housing volume is opened up and cut out to create shaded areas, maximise the amount of natural light coming into the interior and to enhance indoor/outdoor activities.
Designed through an eco-centric point of view, the E house seeks to be a self-sufficient addition to its natural settings adopting effective passive and active strategies for the whole building. The result is a simple geometry which, thanks to the carved out voids, encourages further exploration, allows for uninterrupted connection with the beautiful surroundings and optimizes natural resources such as: light, water and air.
The shaded patios around living room and kitchen, the master bedroom inner courtyard and the vegetable garden veranda are working as transitional spaces between indoors and outdoor, helping to create a controlled microclimate and to minimise the energy consumption. These transitional spaces enhance communal activity during different seasons, but they also help to bring the landscape into the interior.
A water collection system collects rainwater from the roof and pavemented surfaces and gets stored in an underground tank as a water supply for growing food, gardening and, eventually, for the household demand.
A vegetable garden is designed for people to grow their own food, promoting an overall healthier way of living and the entire fenestration is recessed to ensure the house’s increased thermal performance. Part of the electricity household's demand is covered by photovoltaic panels on the roof.
The interior opens up to the surroundings to bring nature in as an important part of the everyday life imagery. Full-height glazing is used throughout the house to offer uninterrupted views of the landscape of Piedmont. Indoor and outdoor spaces become one; during winter the high-energy-performance windows are closed. When the weather allows for it, the windows virtually disappear by creating a continuum house-landscape. A large dining table becomes the materialisation of this connection allowing family and friends to enjoy both the house and the landscape at the same time.
The material palette is based on a sharp contrast between two types of pine-tree wood; light for the interior, dark for the exterior. The rest of the materials are kept in low tonality to allow for the colors of nature to stand out.