Set in the picturesque rural landscape of Langenargen, Germany, this modern farmhouse shelters family life surrounded by a blooming orchard. Designed by k_m architektur, the contemporary construction was built along with the surrounding farmstead. Generous overhangs shelter the expansive glazing of this elongated floor plan, covering the east, west and south facade. Interior living spaces are permanently exposed to natural sunlight coming from the floor-to-ceiling windows. Shaded by light curtains, the living room, dining and kitchen share the same space, interacting to create a social area exposed to outdoor panoramas. A photovoltaic system mounted on the flat roof helps reduce the energy costs, while the heating pipeline in the farm building takes on the rest of the energy demands. Slightly raised from the ground, the house appears to be floating, while the extensive use of wood defines both the interiors and the exterior, composing a warm and inviting display. There was no need for a second story, as the main spaces were cleverly compacted to shape the necessary living conditions adorned with modern details.
Energy during the construction process was saved by using FSC-certified glulam timber instead of steel to create the building’s distinctive wavy roof, while the store’s external walls use hemclad, a highly innovative insulator made from hemp, which, like all plants, absorbs CO2 from the atmosphere as it grows. An 80,000 litre water tank below ground provides water for the store’s toilets and waters the site’s green wall’, which provides natural insulation, acts as an all-natural pollution filter near the car park, and helps to encourage biodiversity. The result is a building that uses a fraction of the energy of structures of a similar size, and is still very popular with local shoppers.
A good building should make you want to look at it. Even if not always liked by passers-by, it should always make them feel something. Manchester Metropolitan’s University’s business school is a building that effortlessly fits this criteria. Indeed for many, the building by Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios is their first taste of the architecture of Manchester as they travel along the arterial road, Mancunian Way. With its distinct ski-slope roof, and glittering mirrored appearance, it provides a flash of silver, and a dazzling break from the dull greys of the motorway, greeting motorists in a slightly space-age way as they enter the city