Light and sustainable homes that minimize environmental impact: Stradbroke House, Gabriel Poole and Tim Bennetton Architects.

Light and Sustainable Home

Light and sustainable homes that minimize environmental impact: Stradbroke House, Gabriel Poole and Tim Bennetton Architects. Written by: Mercedes Galiana

Stradbroke House is one of the last sustainable homes created by Gabriel & Elizabeth Poole Design Company (GEPDC) in collaboration with Tim Bennetton Architects, another example of its light houses that minimize the environmental impact with an original and quality architecture.

It is a small holiday home, for the owner and her four grandchildren, located on North Stradbroke Island, a small Australian island of Moreton Bay, Queensland.

The access to the island is done by boat, and then you get to the house through walkways that run through the environment with a fairly organic layout.

The house has an interior surface of 189.1 m 2 , distributed on two floors under a powerful broken sheet metal roof. On the ground floor there are day spaces, which allow the enjoyment of the whole family and the guests. They emphasize the great hall, that includes almost a double height, and other contiguous spaces to the same one, open and diaphanous, that they have some singular projections located in individual front enclosures, some "deployable capsules" conceived as if of a tent try, providing a fun space to sleep, play or rest the inhabitants of the house.

On the upper floor of this space are the most private rooms, the most conventional family bedrooms, which are accessed by a corridor that turns into a double height that maintains a visual connection with the ground floor.

The house also has another 86.1 m2 of open-air spaces, a large terrace where the inhabitants can enjoy the nature that surrounds the house, with views towards the beach, with which it is communicated again through walkways of wood.

It is an island without infrastructure, so the construction of housing was a challenge. The architecture of Gabriel Poole and Tim Bennetton provided an optimal solution. It is committed to a light house, made of prefabricated materials, in which the corrugated metal sheet and textiles acquire a great prominence and give the building its own character. It emphasizes on the one hand the powerful metallic cover to a water, that leans in a light structure of the same material, and the textile sheets that, tense and subject to this same skeleton, exert of elements of protection and solar and luminance control of the envelope.

Likewise, the deployable capsules are resolved with a textile envelope, whose blue color becomes the great protagonist of the ground floor.

They also highlight other light elements such as the awning of the terrace, created with angles arranged as slats that project an interesting play of light on the pavement.

The interior is dominated by neutral finishes, with smooth white walls, which contrast with the light wood of the sliding doors and the flooring of some rooms. In others, it is committed to light soils with a more continuous finish.

The house has the minimum number of items of furniture, some of them made up of the structure of the house or the envelope, as in the case of the living room couch or the water slide for the children.

The house is completely self-sufficient in terms of energy and water, demonstrating the strong commitment of the creators to sustainable architecture. Likewise, it has elements of passive control of the energy demand, such as the protection of the holes in the façade with the flight of the roof, the arrangement of the awnings, or the protruding frames, protecting each of the windows individually.

Mitch Hills