Design Approaches

Squaring the Circle

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Atop a hill in New Ross, County Wexford, is a beacon for sustainability in large-scale developments, which draws extensively from across the palette of sustainable building options to achieve a building that is notable not just aesthetically, but also in health, energy and environmental impact terms. Jason Walsh visited the new Solar Croi spa, part of the Brandon House Hotel, Health Club and Spa, to find out more.

Good form

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If you are at all worried about keeping construction costs down and lengthening the useable lifespan of your building, it’s critical that energy performance is considered from the earliest stages of planning and design. John Hearne spoke to a number of leading Irish experts in sustainable design about following simple principles of orientation, form and layout to achieve substantial energy improvements for free

Box of Tricks

Wicklow bungalow gets low carbon modernist extension
A typical Irish bungalow built in the early 1990s has been transformed with a green-tinted extension built in the spirit of modernism. Jason Walsh visited Enniskerry, County Wicklow to see how the old and the new were integrated

Limerick civic precinct

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With great attention to energy, materials and water, ABK Architects’ new civic precinct shows that smart green design can show no sign of compromise

Inner Space

An increasing number of sustainable homes are being built in Ireland but many of them are in rural areas, and yet, Ireland is an increasingly urban society.
An increasing number of sustainable homes are being built in Ireland but many of them are in rural areas, and yet, Ireland is an increasingly urban society. Jason Walsh looks at one recent attempt to renovate a small terraced house in inner-city Dublin, bringing it up to modern environmental and energy efficiency standards.

Sound Advice - Acoustic solutions

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When designing and building high density apartment and housing developments, the attention, so often lacking, to acoustic performance, can have a critical impact on the quality of life of the buildings’ inhabitants, as leading acoustic consultant Jim Dunne, Managing Director of Integrated Acoustic Solutions explains

Dream factory

Dream Factory
The rapid emergence of sustainable building in Ireland has been heavily influenced by the techniques of early-adopters extending from Scandinavia, to Canada, to Germany and Austria. John Hearne visited a recently completed timber home in Galway which uses Austrian know-how to couple air-tightness, high levels of insulation and healthy materials with a sustainable approach to heating and ventilation

Southern comfort

Timber eco home fuses south facing with south Dublin
Sustainable building at its best is about much more than just energy and carbon emissions, and involves considering location, form, orientation and the use of healthy, environmentally friendly materials. Mike Haslam of trail-blazing ecological architects Solearth describes a family home which scores highly on every front

All systems go

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Some buildings, by their nature, tend to have larger energy requirements. Occupied around the clock, with occupants who feel the cold, nursing homes are a case in point. John Hearne visited a north Dublin building where a range of different sustainable technologies operate in tandem to deliver the residents’ heating and hot water requirements

'E'volution

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Interhabs, a company who build to the highly energy efficient Canadian Super E programme, have recently entered the Irish house building market.
Jeff Colley speaks to Ronan Long , General Manager of Interhabs Ireland, about the reasons why he believes Interhabs will bring energy efficient, comfortable, healthy homes to people across Ireland

Marketplace + companies featured in this article

Tipperary Energy Agency

'Tipperary Energy Agency has been successfully supporting Tipperary to reduce its energy demand for 20 years.