This summer, our focus will be on an eight houses project in Cluj Napoca’s hills. Designed to suit different kinds of family types, the ensemble will capture the energy of the sun, provide layered exterior spaces and encourage socialisation and connection with nature. We will triple the number of certified Passive Houses in Romania. We will make 8 families energy prosumers, making them free of energy bills for ever. There will be 8 more families in Cluj Napoca that will have a solid starting point for a healthy life.
Hill House is a super energy efficient passive house with a footprint of 30.6 square meters (330 sq feet) and a usable area of 20 square meters ( 215 sq ft), designed for weekend relaxation. Surrounded by hills, this house is a small oasis of serenity, ideal for those who want to run away from the daily stress of big cities. We made its footprint between the existing trees. Only three small shrubs had to be cut down when the building process began. There is no need for a central heating or cooling system. The house uses a ventilation system with heat recovery. Every 10 minutes it changes the entire volume of indoor air with a fresh one, ensuring the energy transfer between the two air flows, but at the same time eliminating the vicious air. Therefore, temperature and humidity will always be kept within the comfort range. In the case of very cold winter time, there is a 1000 watt radiator that can work (but that is rarely needed). Electric underfloor heating in the bathroom is also provided. The heating and cooling costs of the house are lowered by 90 per cent compared to a conventional building.
Having the constraint of a rather small footprint, the interior space was cleverly divided so that it would look bigger than it actually is. A sofa can turn into a generous bed and the dining area is bathed all day in natural light, due to generous window and house orientation. Furthermore, the corner which is dedicated to the preparation of light snacks or morning coffee was designed in a minimalist manner, lightning the general atmosphere, whilst voice-controlled Hi-Fi system animating it by simple verbal notification.
All materials were carefully chosen to provide high levels of perceived quality and a cozy ambient. Apart from the triple glazing windows, top finishing materials were chosen: 3-layer engineered oak flooring for the living space and Ruschita marble in the bathroom. The apparent layer of the walls was made using Magnesium Oxide boards, a natural material that was covered in white paint.
We wanted a healthy and energy-efficient house. So said, so done! We found a suitable land in a perfect area and we decided to hit the road. There are a lot of technical solutions specific to a prefab passive house. The building is south-facing, the foundation uses foam glass, the straw panels insulation, all windows are triple glazed and the air tightness has an amazing value of 0.11/h. The Annual heating demand is 5kWh/m2/year calculated with PHPP. These characteristics are placing Casa Ria as one of the top energy performative houses in the world.
Step by step, the house began to fall into place. 360 sqm of space, with a big living room, a kitchen and 6 bedrooms with their own bathrooms.
MgO boards, natural oil for wooden elements, marble, passive entry door are just a few details of the interior. The above photograph shows the south facing greenhouse on the second storey.
The key line of this project was to find a balance between interior space demands for a family of three, a tight budget and a small footprint. The house uses all principles of a super efficient energy building, capitalizing on all environment's details.
D house is a mix of urban design themes with modern influences and natural minimalism, located in Bucharest’s uptown area. It will be built in 4 weeks time after finishing the foundation step.