U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2011

### inhabitat.com 09/24/11
Team New Zealand’s Solar Decathlon House Puts an Innovative Twist on the Basics
By Amanda Coen
This year’s Solar Decathlon home design competition saw many fresh takes on the solar-powered prefab home, but Team New Zealand stood out from the pack with its elegant, light-filled, wood clad home. Built by students from the Victoria University of Wellington, the beach house inspired First Light home has a breezy, open feel with the invigorating smell of freshly cut cedar planks emanating throughout. This seemingly basic but surprisingly innovative house is currently on display at the 2011 Solar Decathlon competition on the National Mall in Washington DC.

Photograph © Jill Fehrenbacher for Inhabitat

Several unique features set the house apart from the rest. Inspired by the traditional New Zealand holiday home, the “Kiwi bach”, socialising and a relationship with nature were of prime importance in the design process. The front and back bi-folding doors allow for plenty of natural light to enter. An overhanging roof provides ample shade on hot days while also adding protection when the doors are open, creating a seamless unification of the interior and exterior environments.
Read more + Slideshow (27 images)

Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under Architecture, Construction, Design, Economics, Geography, Innovation, Inspiration, Media, Project management, Site, Urban design

2 responses to “U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2011

  1. Elizabeth

    ### idealog.co.nz Fri 30 Sept 2011 @ 10:40 am
    First Light team comes out tops in engineering contest of Solar Decathlon competition
    By Design Daily Team
    Years of hard work for Victoria University’s First Light team, competing in the prestigious US department of Energy Solar Decathlon competition – the first team from the Southern Hemisphere to do so – is beginning to pay off as results from the competition begin to trickle through. Made up of 10 contests and featuring 19 teams, the First Light team has so far taken out first place in the engineering contest and second in the architecture.
    Read more + Video

    • Elizabeth

      ### stuff.co.nz Last updated 16:26 02/10/2011
      Kiwi eco house wins US honours
      A revolutionary solar home design from Wellington has taken out third place in a United States competition. The Meridian First Light House, a unique, Kiwi-bach-inspired design measures 75 square metres, has cedar cladding with concrete and wooden flooring, and is a “net zero energy” dwelling that is designed to produce at least as much energy as it uses. A team of students from Victoria University’s School of Architecture devoted years to the design and construction of the bach and have been rewarded with the top engineering prize, second placing in the architecture category and third place overall in the US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon overall. -The Dominion Post
      Read more

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