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Green Smart Magazine : 2009_new
24 greensmart 9 clever use of space more than makes up for it. Decks extend across all four sides to give a total area of 175 square metres, and enable spaces to be used as living areas all year round due to the sub-tropical climates. 'That proportion is a very unusual design equation, but if you can reduce the size of internal spaces you are way in front of building costs and can supplement that with extra outdoor space -- much cheaper to build,' Kerry says. In fact, 80 per cent of the building is made from recycled and reused materials. Timber accounts for a lot of that, including all doors, windows, decking, sub-floor, blackbutt flooring and joinery amongst others. The kitchen and bathroom feature luxury recycled components too, and there is no compromise on quality. Granite benches, New Guinea rosewood cupboard doors and a marble double vanity complete the attention to detail. A major goal of the five-star LLH was to be self-sufficient in energy. 'Well, we've never paid a power bill,' Kerry says. 'The house generates more power than it uses.' A 1.5kw grid connection photovoltaic solar generation system is mounted to the roof, while there's also a solar hot water system with on-demand gas backup. The passive solar design features a stone wall strategically located between the living and bedroom area to provide thermal mass benefit to both rooms at once. For cross-ventilation, fenestration and raked roof and ceiling heights on the southern walls enable hot air convection and venting. No airconditioning is allowed in The Ecovillage design. When it comes to water and waste management, every house in The Ecovillage is completely self-sufficient. The LLH has its own very innovative and hard-working water feature in the form of WaterCell floor tanks. Conceived by Landmatters, the WaterCell prototypes -- a new multi-purpose system about to be released to the market -- are basically four modular tanks used under the dining room floor. By capitalising on winter solar penetration the tanks are used as the foundation, structural sub-floor, water storage and thermal mass in the building component. smarthomes A clever feature of The Ecovillage is EcoVision. This is an intelligent monitoring and control system, which feeds information to owners about their house's electricity generation through the photovoltaics and energy consumption (lighting, power-point and pump energy), LPG gas, recycled water and potable water consumption. The information is presented via an LCD touch screen fitted to the kitchen area to promote occupant awareness and to help manage usage. This is fed back to the Ecovillage Body Corporate to promote efficiency through other resident's efforts. Every house is fitted with 'smart wiring' which enables individuals to turn light appliances, heating and irrigation on and off according to monitored sensor related information. 'It reports what our consumption is in an easy-to-read format. For kids it's terrific,' Kerry says. intelligent vision ABOVE: The EcoVision provides information for homeowners about their electricity use RIGHT: The kitchen boasts granite benches and recycled New Guinea rosewood cupboard doors DECKS ENABLE SPACES TO BE USED AS LIVING AREAS ALL YEAR ROUND DUE TO THE SUB-TROPICAL CLIMATES