Since leading the Grimshaw design team on the British Pavilion at Expo '92, Mark Fisher Architects has continued its research into sustainable modular construction, developing a series of prototypical house designs. The latest, the VXSolar House for the Mounts Bay Trading Company, is now on site in Cornwall and due for completion this summer. Incorporating a 'smart' south-facing roof designed to take photovoltaic panels, the house collects solar energy and rainwater for storage in a subterranean thermal sink. The traditional plan has been inverted with living spaces at the first floor and bedrooms below opening directly out onto the garden.
Early discussions with the local authority helped achieve planning permission on what could otherwise have been a contentious contemporary development. The project value of each unit is £85,000. Paul and Craig Osborne is the contractor, and Dennis Pryor Engineers is the structural engineer.