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Jerry Tate scoops planning for gridshell country house

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Jerry Tate Architects has won planning for a 500m² country house in Easton, Suffolk inspired by a sycamore seed

The home on the greenfield site will sit within a proposed parkland and has been design to be self-sufficient ‘in terms of energy, water and food’.

According to the east London-based practice, which claims to bring ‘architecture and nature together’, work is expected to start on site in spring 2013.


The architect’s view

The contemporary design integrates the building and landscape in both form and function. We derived the house’s lamella timber gridshell design from the form of a sycamore seed. Through its natural curves and grid, the design will generate a building that blends into the surrounding natural environment.

The scale of the proposed building is reduced significantly by setting the accommodation into the existing site contours, with only the south and west elevations revealing the full seven metres height of the façade. The remaining elevations will be concealed by earth bunds planted with greenery and a wildflower meadow. The internal scale of the house will vary dramatically from a full height entrance hallway, to the smaller utility areas at the north of the property which will almost entirely be concealed.

The proposed landscape, designed in collaboration with Luke Greysmith, uses the principles of ‘Permaculture’, a method for designing ecosystems which, alongside the proposed residential development, will enhance the ecology of the site. We will introduce elements within an ‘eco-intelligent’ landscape such as energy production, water treatment, food production, waste treatment and increased bio-diversity to use and re-use resources efficiently. 

The intention for the ‘Permaculture’ design was to work the proposed building envelope into the existing eco-system so that the current ecology is enriched by the new house.


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