Ballast Point House in Sydney is almost (92%) off grid through the installation of solar panels and battery storage, rainwater harvesting and greywater use. To encourage low energy usage, architects Fox Johnston have integrated sustainable design features such as it’s reliance on thermal mass, site orientation, ample natural light and natural ventilation through the clever placement of courtyards and windows.
The home was designed for multi-generational living, and to achieve this the architects made clever use of the dual access sloping site by placing a self-contained apartment above the garage on the lower street frontage. The main house accessed via the second street frontage. The two dwellings can be opened up to create a larger home or can be locked for privacy.
Despite the home being sited on a relatively small block and closely surrounded by neighbouring properties, the use of small but lush gardens, rooftop cactus gardens and a courtyard make the home feel private and secluded. There are views of greenery or the harbour throughout all rooms in the home.
Related project: North Bondi House by James Garvan Architecture
– Joinery is sustainable plywood
– Window and door frames are sustainably sourced blonde Accoya wood
– Solar panels with battery storage
– Rainwater harvesting
– Thermal mass via exposed concrete floors
– Hydronic in-slab underfloor heating
– Natural ventilation and ceiling fans used for cooling
– House is orientated on the site to aid passive design
– Timber sliding screens on the upper windows moderate solar glare and privacy
– Low-E glazing
– Recycled bricks left raw or painted
The house is designed to work in the hot summer months by closing it down during the day, and opening it up again once the temperature outside starts to fall.
Nadine is the founder and editor of Eco Edition and founder of the Eco Edition Design School. She’s an experienced interior designer, sustainable materials consultant, speaker and serial home renovator.