The Russell Vale Reno 2020

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Location
Russell Vale NSW 2517
    • Housing Type:
    • Standalone House
    • Project Type:
    • Renovation
    • Builder
    • BKB Constructions
    • Designer
    • Envirotecture

About The Russell Vale Reno

This humble weatherboard cottage had all the features common to the typology – lightweight structure, minimal insulation, small original rooms and a poorly designed asbestos addition to rear. But, it was also blessed with a level block and great solar access to the rear.

The clients wanted to renovate the existing cottage and achieve a comfortable family home that requires minimal mechanical heating and cooling while sticking to a limited budget – a common brief for Envirotecture.

The original veranda presented an opportunity to connect the old with the new. The removal of unsympathetic aluminium windows, repair of the decking and addition of new cladding, high-performance insulation and appropriate membranes to the existing walls harmonises the building, presenting as a seamless whole upon approach.

Internally, the existing rear gable is extended to reach for the sun. The linear dining, kitchen and living space draws winter sun and year-round daylight through a well-shaded, double-glazed stacking sliding door system. The doors also provide the indoor/outdoor connection so important to a family focused on outdoor living and food production.

The covered outdoor living space has custom-designed summer shades fixed between rafters, allowing the best of both seasons to be exploited for comfort. The deep western veranda provides summer protection while allowing a quiet sitting spot to appreciate the escarpment views.

Phase change materials (PCM) are incorporated into the building fabric to provide thermal storage. The nature of the site and the existing home were unsuited to a concrete slab, so the PCM provide similar results with a lower embodied-carbon impact.

The building utilises best-practice thermal and moisture control with breathable membranes and high-performance insulation, not only to the walls but also to the floor of the existing cottage and continuous insulation to the ceiling. The clients report, “There is enough heat generated and stored through the PCM and insulation to warm during the day and into the night”.

The plywood kitchen design by Paiano Kitchens integrates beautifully with the ply-lined seating nook; a morning coffee spot in the winter sun. The recycled hardwood benchtop by Architectural Hardwood Joinery reinforces the linear nature of the space.

The project successfully demonstrates that comfort, conservation and cost can be balanced to deliver high-performance homes for Australian families.

Designed by Envirotecture.

Read more about The Russell Vale Reno in Architecture & Design

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SUSTAINABLE FEATURES

Years Open
2018
2019
2020
ENERGY AND WATER EFFICIENT FEATURES
    • Energy efficiency:
    • Efficient lighting
      Efficient appliances
      Energy monitoring
    • Passive heating cooling:
    • Passive solar designed home
      Shading
    • Active heating cooling:
    • Ceiling fans

    • Active heating cooling:
    • Gas heater
    • Water heating:
    • Hot water heat pump
    • Water harvesting and saving features:
    • Rainwater storage - Above ground
    • Above ground rainwater storage Type:
    • Colorbond Slimline tank
    • Above ground rainwater storage Size
    • 5000L
    • Energy Efficient Lighting
    • Natural daylight
    • Window Protection:
    • Awnings (external)
      Eaves
INSULATION SPECIFICATIONS
    • Insulation Type:
    • External walls

    • External Walls Type:
    • Bulk – polyester
RENEWABLE ENERGY SPECIFICATIONS
    • All-Electric Home?
    • No
    • Renewable energy used:
    • Solar PV grid connect
    • Size of PV system:
    • 6.6kW
COSTS AND COST SAVINGS
    • Cost estimate of sustainable home/features:
    • $338,000
HOUSE DESIGN SPECIFICATIONS
    • House Size
    • 160m2
    • Roof
    • Metal (Colorbond)
    • Wall Materials
    • Timber
    • Window and Door Types
    • Double glazing
    • Number of bedrooms
    • 4
    • Number of bathrooms
    • 2
GARDEN AND WASTE REDUCTION
    • Garden / Outdoors
    • Chickens
      Composting
      Edible garden
      Local indigenous plants
      Orchard
      Organic
      Permaculture
      Native plants
      Water wise plants
      Worm farm
    • Waste Reduction Practices:
    • Compost all food scraps
      Recycle
HEALTHY HOME FEATURES
    • Healthy home features
    • Cross flow ventilation
      Indoor plants for air filtration
      Natural oil sealer/finishes
      VOC free paints/sealer/varnish
      Wax based sealer/finish

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