Five elements of nature incorporated into the design of architect's home

Wednesday 02 Jan 2013

Natural and local materials used in low-energy responsible home

House of Five Elements in Bangalore, India, is the residence of its architect designed with the five elements of nature:  air, earth, water, fire and space -the Panchmahabhutas. These cater to the needs of the three faculties of man: physical, psychological and spiritual.

The spaces inside the house are peaceful and flow into each other courtesy of the two-level open to sky courtyard with waterbodies, open kitchen and double height dining area. All the five bedrooms and drawing room are placed around the courtyard on two levels. The courtyard and the skylights bring ample natural light and ventilation.

Natural and local recyclable materials such as bamboo, stone, soil blocks, terracotta and fly-ash were used alongside simple indigenous construction methods. Bamboo is used throughout the house in walls, columns, beams and a large double-curve shell roof with tarpaulin for waterproofing. Debris, boulders and indigenous plants with multiple green roofs and terraces are used in the landscaping to improve the building's footprint.

Large windows, high ceilings and skylights provide natural light and ventilation throughout. Electricity is generated by a solar-wind hybrid system and there are plans for the house to go off-grid in the future. A rainwater harvesting sump collects rainwater and recycles it for use in gardening and flushing.

The House of Five Elements is a low-energy home; an expression of architecture with responsible creativity and creative responsibility.

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