Strathmoor House is a project envisioned by Berkeley-based studio WA Design and located in the East Bay hills in Berkeley, California, USA. The main objective of the architects was to create a home that would offer a high level of privacy, while ensuring unobstructed views towards San Francisco Bay: “To establish privacy we introduced a curved shell wall, clad with cement board panels, that conforms to the street edge and presents an opaque textural surface. The shell wall is a study of carefully moderated transparency, both acoustic and visual, with minimal windows set on the module of the cement panels.
Envisioned as a space between the buildings, like an exterior plaza, the entry volume organizes the flow through the home. The experience of this “outdoor space” is enhanced and strengthened by building elements that address the space with raw finishes typical of building exteriors. Rough cement plaster, metal siding, stained concrete floors, and galvanized stairs all provide a seamless transition from the streetside entry through to the view side of the home and a two-story window wall opening to the garden. Facing south, this window wall shines daylight into the surrounding spaces and dramatically opens views to the San Francisco Bay”. Check out the photos and if you have any comments regarding this project, feel free to express them.
Energy during the construction process was saved by using FSC-certified glulam timber instead of steel to create the building’s distinctive wavy roof, while the store’s external walls use hemclad, a highly innovative insulator made from hemp, which, like all plants, absorbs CO2 from the atmosphere as it grows. An 80,000 litre water tank below ground provides water for the store’s toilets and waters the site’s green wall’, which provides natural insulation, acts as an all-natural pollution filter near the car park, and helps to encourage biodiversity. The result is a building that uses a fraction of the energy of structures of a similar size, and is still very popular with local shoppers.
These days, a building doesnt just have to look good, it should ideally be good for the environment too. A great example of sustainability spliced with style from the past few years is the M&S store at Cheshire Oaks Retail Park in Ellesmere Port, designed by Aukett Fitzroy Robinson.