Activity in the Hobbit House: Blog 4

I began to look for a home that displayed visual concepts of biomicry and industrial ecology. Success had been found in the form of a grassy hillside home in Wales. Famous for its structure and seen in films, the little Hobbit House was designed with “a low impact or permaculture approach to life- living in harmony with the natural world, doing things simply, and using appropriate levels of technology.” (Simon Dale)

Inspired by our outdoor activity, I will examine this house in Wales and highlight the connections between the building, industrial ecology and biomicry.

Activity 1:

The functions of this home are to provide structure, shelter, low visual impact, and self-sustaining. Like a tree, the house was dug into the earth hillside. The (roots) flooring supported itself by a layer of stone, pallets planks, straw to anchor the unit while providing a damp proof membrane.

Activity 2:

In place of dry wall, this home used straw bales in the walls for super insulation and easy building. Lime plaster on the walls is a breathable and low energy to manufacture compared to cement. The incredibly sustainable fridge unit is cooled by air coming underground through the foundation. A skylight in the roof eliminates unnecessary electricity usage. Fresh water derived by gravity from a nearby spring.

Activity 3:

Commonly blinded by our actions that impact the environment, houses can be massive structures that under utilize space. Simon Dale, not a builder or carpenter created a hidden getaway to Hobbit House hillside. He addressed the issue of high visual impact and space by camouflaging the unit with a plastic sheet and mud/turf roof, allowing vegetation to cover.

Take a look http://www.simondale.net/house

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