Shoalwater Residence

A compact beachside property that required creative design to ensure effective sustainable performance.

Located only a few hundred meters from the beach with its side boundary to north, the site for this home presented as a great opportunity to maximize the buildings performance and remove any reliance on mechanical heating or cooling. Natural materials like stone and timber helped bring the outdoors in, along with large bifold doors that opened from the living and dining areas into a small courtyard.


While in a great location, this home is on a very compact and square 348m² site which posed a challenge. Long sites are typically better when trying to achieve good solar passive performance.

The solution here was to create a home with a northern courtyard that essentially narrowed the home at the waist. This allows lots of winter sun to shine into the heart of the home and sea breezes to cool it in summer.

Sustainable Features

Adjustable louvers around the top of the courtyard roof allow the occupants to control the amount of sunlight that comes into the home. The skillion roof was purposely selected to create The Bernoulli Effect.  Air that flows over the roof creates a low pressure which in turn draws air through the home and out through the alfresco area. By adjusting how much the windows are open in the adjacent bedrooms the clients can control the airflow through the home.

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