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Magpie House is an all-electric, Passive Solar design (8.2 star NATHERS) knock down rebuild of a typical Canberra ex-govie in Watson, completed by an owner builder from 2018-2020. The 180 square meter dwelling uses the traditional Passive Solar design approach of manipulating orientation, glazing, thermal mass, mechanical ventilation and insulation to minimise energy consumption to maintain thermal comfort. In combination with these approaches, 10kw of PV solar, an electric car charger, Hot water heat pump and energy efficient lighting and appliances, enables Magpie house to not only be net energy positive, but economically positive in its energy and transport energy costs throughout the year. The existing house on the site was slowly dismantled and valuable, recyclable materials were diverted from landfill and have since served as the basis for joinery, furniture, and architectural detailing in the new build.
Other aspects of the build that visitors may find interesting include, integrated acoustic surfaces/finishes, reverse brick veneer construction, slab edge insulation, automated ventilation systems, DIY concrete countertops, Low VOC finishes, honeycomb blinds, custom light fittings, and self built kitchen/joinery.
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