Tag Archives: Architecture

Sustainable House Day 2016 in Ballarat

 

Renovations New Building Home Green Eco Energy-Efficient Passive Solar Design Daylesford Trentham Woodend Buninyong Clunes Creswick Kyneton Castlemaine Solar Power Rammed Earth Strawbale Recycled Timber Pre Fab SIPSSustainable House Day 2016 comes to Ballarat! (And it’s just a few weeks away!)

This year it is on Sunday 11th September, with a large list of houses all over the country available for you to visit and be inspired. The full list of houses is still being updated, so keep an eye on the Sustainable House Day website, and register there to attend. It is admiral that so many people are willing to open their doors to their private homes, share their insights and proudly display how they’ve embraced sustainability.

In previous years, there has been a wide variety of homes, each of which vary with their approach to what ‘sustainability’ means to them. I’ve written before about what a truly sustainable house is, and how there are always areas of compromise and prioritising what are the most important aspects for you. You might see a traditional period home in town that have been retro-fitted with insulation, double-glazing and solar hot water to improve energy-efficiency. Or a very ‘normal’ looking family home on a block out of town that is completely off-grid with their energy and water. Or perhaps a home that focuses more on natural materials such as mud brick or straw bale construction. Some homes have completely embraced passive solar design principles…while others haven’t. It is a broad spectrum and I think you can find something new to learn with each example, and hopefully be inspired by different approaches!

There are a number of homes in the Ballarat region which you can also find on the local BREAZE (Ballarat Renewable Energy and Zero Emissions) website. BREAZE and the ‘Smart Living Ballarat’ crew have also arranged to start the day with some Sustainable House Presentations by local professionals (Dale Boucher, Mick Moloney and me!) – kicking off at 9am at the Ballarat Library.

I’ll be there to present a ‘virtual tour’ of some of my current projects, so you can gain an insight into the architectural design process, and how sustainability is approached holistically. Sustainable homes are a lot more than just adding solar panels, and this presentation will provide some helpful professional advice about the key areas to focus on to get maximum benefits and savings (for you, your wallet, and the planet!).

If you know anyone who might be interested in learning more about sustainable homes, please let them know about this free event – thanks – I’d love to see a some friendly faces there! See you on Sunday 11th September 9am – 10:30am at the Ballarat Library. Don’t forget to register here to attend.

 

Are you planning on attending Sustainable House Day this year? Or have you been in the past? Don’t be shy – let me know in the comments below!

Ballarat Sustainable Architect Green Builder


Talina Edwards Architecture: elemental design is a Ballarat-based studio, with a passion for sustainable design, green buildings and healthy homes. Click here to ensure you won’t miss out on our news!

 

Your Home Designed Globally, Created and Aligned Locally

I often get asked to explain what I do – even when I say I’m an architect, or that I run my own architectural practice, I still get blank looks, or people want me to explain more. I’ve met some very inspiring women entrepreneurs over the past few years, and many of them have great business advice – including how important it is to try and communicate what it is I do (for you) in one short sentence. I previously thought my ‘elemental design‘ tagline and philosophy had it covered, but it seems that this might have been a bit obscure.

I’m very aware of the ‘eco-fatigue’ that exists now that there is so much green-wash out there, so I was keen to avoid words such as sustainable, eco, green, environmental, ethical, natural, organic, healthy, earthy, and so on, yet of course I still want to evoke that this is my ethos! (Which is why I like the term ‘elemental‘ design instead to cover these). However avoiding these words does make things a bit difficult, doesn’t it?!

Ballarat Central Regional Victoria Home Design Green Building Eco Sustainable Renovations

“Your home designed globally, created and aligned locally.” – Talina Edwards Architecture

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It’s all about comfort! (2016 South Pacific Passive House Conference Melbourne #SPPHC2016)

I recently wrote this review for the ArchiTeam newsletter ‘Datum’ – the original article appeared here and if you’re wondering ‘What is Passive House?’, you can read more about this in my previous post.


 

It’s all about comfort! (2016 South Pacific Passive House Conference Melbourne #SPPHC2016)

Ballarat Central Regional Victoria Home Design Green Building Eco Sustainable Renovations

 

 

Comfort, you say?

  • Not too hot, not to cold – just right, always.
  • Healthy indoor air quality.
  • Calm, peaceful spaces.
  • A place for well-being.

Hands up who wants a home with these qualities?!

Heading along to the Passive House Conference in Melbourne recently, organized by the Australian Passive House Association, I was expecting a lot of technical information over the two jam-packed days. There were 24 presentations, plus workshops and a tradeshow. However, the biggest message from the local and international experts was to remind us that Passive House is all about occupant comfort, and this is achieved with well-designed (& well-built) passive buildings envelopes. This might sound obvious, but so often with discussion of the Passive House standard, the focus shifts to discussions of energy-efficiency and also the mechanical-ventilation system (which is really only a small component). Continue reading

Victoria Premier’s Sustainability Awards – Winners announced!

Eureka Mums charity Winner if Premier's Sustainability Awards 2015 Talina Edwards  Architecture Ballarat Blog post

I was thrilled that the winners were announced last week for the Victoria Premier’s Sustainability Awards – and local charity, Eureka Mums (with sister organisations St Kilda Mums and Geelong Mums) were awarded both the Community Award and the top gong with the Premier’s Recognition Award!

The Premier’s Sustainability Awards have been run by Sustainability Victoria since 2007,  rewarding and recognising those who implement environmentally-sustainable measures to better manage waste, water and energy consumption. You can check out the full list of 2015 winners at http://sustainabilityawards.vic.gov.au/2015-finalists. and read an Eco News article about it here.

I was extra proud of this win, as I helped out Eureka Mums with some pro-bono architectural services earlier this year when they moved into their new warehouse. If you haven’t heard of them, they are a fabulous crew of volunteer women, who arrange collection of, store, organise and re-house pre-loved babies’ and children’s gear to those in need. St Kilda Mums was where it all started in 2009 with Geelong Mums and Eureka mums to follow soon after. The founder of ‘Eureka Mums’ Ballarat’s Erin Malone and her dedicated team are an inspiration. Continue reading

Is your architect a nerd?

Building Renovating Green Sustainable Eco House Home

Is your architect a nerd?

Um, yes I am.

Are all architects nerds? Err, pretty much. You see, we need to be. Buildings are very complex things, and Architecture is more than just building… so we kind of have to be really, really, into what we do, as there’s a lot to learn! In no particular order: Design, Construction, Planning, Heritage, Bushfire, Sustainability, Affordability, Services, Trends, Ethics, Permits, Philosophy, Landscape, Aesthetics, Interiors, Plans, Sketches, 3D models, Specifications, Feasibilities …. and so on. These are just some of the daily tasks/considerations that we tackle on the job. (I’ve written about this before. See What Does An Architect Do? )

Did you know… Continue reading