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My Home Is My Castle: Part 2

05 March 2021

Grounds House 624

The sustainability and wellbeing of ‘The Grounds’ residence (2 of 3)

In the world we live in today, sustainability is an unavoidable word and is becoming more conscious and present in nearly every area of life and living.

From the individual to the corporation, everyone is learning and adapting to this new area of life. For most people, this idea begins in the daily life and in the home. While we are personally invested in this philosophy, it makes sense that we look at this in more detail and create a new offering of design for the clients of today and of tomorrow.

And so The Grounds House was born.

Sustainability is not only being able to recycle or re use, it encompasses the entire life cycle of each and every material and product; where it began, how it will perform when used and where will it go when no longer needed.

After researching many options and assessing the viability, we have sourced an undeniably promising, superior quality solution.

Solid timber walling.

This may not sound very much to begin with but allow me a moment and I shall explain.

 We wholeheartedly wanted to create a residence dedicated to its impact on the Future. It is designed to be sustainable in multiple ways.

1.    Sustainable in that it has a lower impact on the environment during construction and during operation

2.    Sustainable in it offering health benefits to the inhabitants while increasing their daily quality of living.

3.    Sustainable in that is designed with an inherent spatial flexibility to allow for life changes, reducing the need for moving or building in future.

One of the main structural materials used for the building is a solid timber wall. In this case the wall is made without any artificial elements such as glues or timber treatments. It is a proven wall system applied to over 1000 buildings already.

The environmental impact of using timber walls is well known. Timber converts CO2 by growing, so you start with a material that already had a positive impact on the environment. The construction of this property is not totally green as it still uses concrete for the foundations, but certainly less than for a comparable size property.

Depending on the system, the timber elements used to assemble the walls are made from shorter lengths, that often are not useful for the building industry and therefore regularly disregarded as fuel or for chipboard production. Therefore, the timber used is saved from being processed.

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It is assembled in a way that an air cushion is trapped between the timber elements acting in two ways. It is a temperature leveller, allowing airflow within the timber to keep it dry and at the same time as a gradual temperature buffer that avoids condensation. It also allows, although very slowly, the building to breath which is good for the moisture levels within the building, creating a balanced, consistent level of healthy internal air quality.

Due to the inherent insulating character of the timber wall, there is only a minimal amount of additional finishing materials needed. Further due to the structural integrity the walls are capable of, there is less need of additional steel support to create great architecture. So using the wall with a worked out solution for heating, orientation of the building in combination with the use of renewable energy sources it is a very effective way to create a building that needs very little energy to run even with a swimming pool.

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You can see the clear environmentally friendly qualities but there is a whole other level of benefits. The most interesting points of the timber wall is that it creates one of the healthiest living environments anyone can live in. The timber walls not only maintain a balanced temperature, but they also shield from radiation (electric, radio waves and similar).

Most importantly however, wood has the ability to purify the air. That is proven in forests but also applies when used without additives in timber structures. So people that have the luck to inhabit such buildings are most likely to have far less problems with allergies and with the balanced moisture levels within the rooms it equally supports the respiratory system of our bodies.

It really is an environment your body wants to live in and a luxury from nature, that only timber can provide.

 

Note : We have in-depth information on the timber construction element, as well as on issues that can affect a building over time such as fire safety, longevity, flooding. If you are interested, please do get in touch and we will provide information specific to your request.