What criteria will we take into account?
– An economical house. We want to build an affordable home to help with what we noticed are common issues: lack of housing and rapid population growth.
– Keeping it simple. This property will be tailored to the population that could live there, avoiding abrupt cultural changes. The technologies in place should be simple to use and suitable for the community to reach greater social acceptance.
– Minimum maintenance. To reduce the risk of failure, the house and the technologies applied must require minimum maintenance and avoid (at best) any need of specialist intervention.
– Energy efficiency. The goal is to build a low-energy house, to minimize the impact of the environment and to reduce maintenance costs (using for instance solar water heaters and orientation integrating bioclimatic concepts).
– Save and reuse water. With filtration systems, water saving devices (taps, integrated diffusers, dual-flush toilets …), greywater treatment, and other appropriate reuse systems.
– Reduce and recycle waste. The house’s impact on the environment will be limited if the amount of waste generated by the occupants is reduced, by providing on-site solutions such as compost bins. Inorganic and organic waste will be separated. The compost will be used in the organic vegetable garden, which will be integrated into the home in a practical and aesthetic way, and provide fresh vegetables to be consumed throughout the year.
– A sustainable house. The main idea is that the construction and green practices are sustainable over time and adapted to everyday life.
– A replicable model. Our objective is to make this project a model for the construction of new homes and sustainable neighborhoods, which can be reproduced and adapted to different scales and in different locations. Each decision taken will be justified, depending on the climate, population and the materials available. This is essential to adapt the model to other locations.
We are not necessarily talking about very sophisticated and expensive technologies, but small design improvements and easy green practices to reduce consumption and environmental impact, and to improve the quality of life.