Location: Hjerting, Esbjerg, Denmark
Architect: C.F.Moller Architects
Client: Nis Alstrup
Design date: 2008
Completion date: 2009
Built area: 311m2
Architects: C.F. Moller
Civil Engineer: Tækker Rådgivende Ingeniører
Photographer: Julian Weyer
The house on the shore with a view of the Wadden Sea is an energy-plus house, which means that it produces more electricity and heat than it uses. This was achieved without compromising on the exclusive qualities of a large home, including large panoramic sea-views.
The architecture has a clear and simple expression, open and transparent to the sea and more closed and private towards the neighbours. The unusual geometry of the volume is combined with a calm and unpretentious detailing, and a restrained palette of high-quality materials.
The building, which is designed on the basis of the 'passive house' principle, is compact in form, with large windows facing the view to the south-west, which is also the best angle at which to make optimal passive use of the sun's heat. The angle also respects the shoreline protection zone, and out of this derives the triangular floor plan layout, which is one of the buildings characteristics. Another is the sloping roof, which is angled and orientated to optimize the performance of the solar heating and solar cells.
Passive solar heat gain is absorbed and accumulated in the interior concrete walls and floor slabs, while the south-west facing balcony and overhangs shade the facades and control the amount of solar energy in correlation to the seasons. The balcony is designed as a free-standing concrete slab completely eliminating any cold-bridging to the interior.
The house is self-sufficient in electricity and heat through this use of solar and geothermal energy, meaning in effect that it produces more energy than it consumes. By law, the building must still be connected to the grid, but the meters will simply be running backwards in periods.
In the spirit of the project, it is built using efficient pre-fabrication and environmentally-sustainable materials such as paper granules, which is a recycled product, and eco-labelled products. The house is designed to require minimal maintenance; the façade, for example, is clad in fibre cement, to withstand the local Wadden Sea climate. This will help to increase the building’s sustainability over time.