As green as green can be

As the process of cladding Copper Bottom begins, its sculpted form and dramatic colour are beginning to emerge. But being green is about more than the colour of the outside.

Copper Bottom is not just green on the outside, sustainability is the driver of the design of the house. It is intended to be the most holistically sustainable new home in the region.

Key sustainability factors

The location is rural but within walking and cycling distance of all services and facilities and public transport infrastructure. Car use will be minimal.

The interior is a simple cuboid to maximise form factor efficiency.

We are using a structural insulated panel timber frame structure to minimise embodied energy, programme length and site risks, and to maximise off-site construction and build quality.

We are cladding the house in copper because it is 100% recycled and recyclable as well as having excellent aesthetics and longevity. You can read Adrian’s love letter to copper in an earlier blog.

The house will be a super-insulated, super-airtight passive house with a high thermal mass.

As explained in an earlier blog post, its sculpted shape, far from being architectural whimsy, is led by the need to reduce solar gain. The deep reveals and dramatic overhangs will shade the windows from high sun in the summer but enable solar gain through the cooler winter months.

The roof is designed to maximise the area and efficiency of an array of solar panels, which will support all the power needs of the house, directly and via two batteries. We will feed back any excess energy to the grid.

There will be an air source heat pump to provide the limited space heating required and hot water, and an MVHR system to ensure there is minimal heat loss in the provision of fresh air throughout the house.

Other green features include charging points for electric cars and bicycles and a rainwater harvesting tank, the use of native species in new hedge planting and a significant increase in biodiversity on the site.

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