Río Cedro House (Casa en Río Cedro) by Plan.B architects seems to be in a complete symbiosis with its environment of the tropical dry forest along the shoreline of the Caribbean Sea in Cordoba. It seems to be the most harmonious and natural environment, but unfortunatly the area was seriously hit by deforestation and impacts of the presence of many stock farms, which had an enormous impact on the mangroves and their vast biological diversity. The team tried to minimize the environmental impact of the building by choosing their material wisely and adapt the design to its climate.
The two-storey house exist of a completly open-air structure without any facades. The floors are completly open to ensure an enormous flexibility. This allows for multiple activities during the day- and nighttime.
Because of the history of the site, the architects have chosen to avoid using wood from the direct projectsite. Instead they used certified Carribean Pine timber for the open structure, which is treated with a sustainable and local practice. This structure is placed in a concrete foundation to hold the building in it's place. Besides this generates an rigid structure.
The 30 cm think roof is realized by a traditional techniques of the locals with the branches of the local “Palma Amarga”. Another local palm plant “palmalata” is used for the enclosed elements of the house.
The design does not try to withstand the windforces, but benefits from it by letting the wind pass through the house. Natural ventilation and passive cooling is optimally used by the complete open structure. The overhanging roof protects the house from other forces of nature. In the dry season it provides shades, while in the wet season the thickness of 30 cm creates an insulation layer to keep the heat out. This keeps the house nice and dry during the whole year. Also the north-south orientation minimize the solar heating and simaltaneously ensures optimized advantage of the natural see breezes.
Description: An open-air, passive cooling house built out of local materials.
Design: Plan b arquitectura
Consultants: Project Manager: Felipe Mesa + Federico Mesa Work team: Ivanovha Benedetto Sebastián Serna Carlos Blanco
Building status: in use
Construction period: 2010 - 2011
Location: Río Cedro, Colombia
Coordinates: 9°8'56.1'' N, 76°10'31'' W
Tags: local resources, timber, climate
Project ID: 129
Published: 16 October 2011
Last updated: 18 August 2013
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