Innovative Eco Home Brings Joie de Vive to the French Suburbs
By reflecting back the trees on the sidewalk, the mirrored windows on the back of this house create the impression of an apparently empty wall with windows looking through to a forest instead of into a solid house.
The forest apparently captured in the house on the street side of this innovative home from Djuric Tardio Architectes is the first of many delights in this charming eco home in the French suburbs.
The entire top of the house has an unusual gabled trellis over a full sized roof deck.
This gabled shape was in order to conform to a building code requirement that the house have the same gable shape as its neighbors.
But the architect has turned that requirement on its head. Instead of the liability of just another dark cramped attic, this is an asset.
Instead of a dark attic the young family has another place to play.
Uncluttered and simple, the roof deck offers a wide open vista on the tight space, as well as a row of skylights that provide passive warmth for the house inside.
The gabled trellis can be planted up with vines for a rooftop garden.
The empty space avoids finality, and lets the imagination roam with possibilities. Sustainably-sourced Finnish wood was used throughout.
The view back through the pleasing open house is open to the street (the mirrored windows are clear viewed from this side) is a model of passive design.
Huge sliding walls slicing the spacious living area make the library off limits when parents need to focus.
But open, the library flows effortlessly from the main living area.
Passive design brings sun all the way in from a skylight wall that goes all the way back to the kitchen.
This skylight on the edge of the house ends with a double height window that opens up the space to passive heating and gives the lofty feeling of a double height ceiling.
But actually, as these varied ceiling heights show, the high wall ends above the sliding doors, where it cradles a playroom upstairs.
But light bounced between these skylights and double windows is the only warming needed.
The playroom upstairs is young and fresh with a refreshingly simple loft-like layout.
The playroom opens out to one side of the deck overlooking the garden.
The deck is planted with vegetables and fruits like kiwifruits and grapes.
The plants are irrigated by a rainwater harvesting system.
In such a cramped space between the neighbors, this house is an absolute miracle of freedom, with many light-filled, open spaces.
Almost suggesting a barn in the country, with its grasses planted at the edges, this is a home with many roomy places to escape and dream.