Vancouver Marina is the home of todays floating house, owned by Doug McClelland and Anthony Tucker they decided to position they’re newly constructed boat house alongside some amazing yachts and boats of the rich and famous. The new home stands out as the most modern and newest of additions to the marina but also taking on extra windows for natural light and its sleek modern design makes it hard not to ignore especially with its panoramic views from the roof deck seating area.
The exterior of the house although modern still takes on a nortical nature due to its cedar wood panelling with clear coat finish which contrasts against the the corrugated steel which was an addition to pay hommage to the old boat sheds that once existed along the old Coal harbour marina. Although a shiny mirror type finish was used instead of the dull grey finish normally associated with the old boat sheds. The house is sited on a 8ft deep concrete floatation that is filled with styrofoam. "It was pretty tricky for the engineers and the architects to fit everything we wanted and needed into a 20′ x 45′ footprint, while still keeping the house stable and floating levelly," McClelland says.
Although a little limited in space the use of natural light as well as natural colours in the home gives it a feeling of being much larger than it is. All spaces have been maximised which gives it a homely feel.
The Dining area seated next to the sliding doors means that when entertaining guests or choosing to eat out on the terrace is always an option to relax or entertain within easy reach of the kitchen.
The kitchen is spacious and well laid out utilizing a JennAir down-draft fan behind the cooker top has allowed the saving of space compared to a normal full cooker hood."We really wanted the cooktop in front of the window, but we didn’t want to have a conventional fan hanging over it," says McClelland. The down-draft fan rises out of the counter and outputs exhaust below the counter.
Making the kitchen feel light, airy and clean the use of white granite worktops, glass subway tile splash backs and IKEA light maple cabinets keep the kitchen in keeping with the rest of the home while giving a real sense of space. Going for an extra tall refrigerator from Blomberg means you get more space utilized due to limited width in the house boat home. The lighting system from Robinson Lighting also finishes the kitchen off as it reflects off the worktops and brightens up the kitchen.
The entire home has been thought out thoroughly and its dimensions aren’t far off a shipping container home at 20′ x 45′ and does show how a bit of thought on the design aspects before you start as well as sourcing the right materials can make all the difference on the finished product. A beautiful home that is fully functional on a small footprint.
Not my first choice of colours and design for the exterior paintwork but the Conhouse was introduced to deal with high housing prices and a declining affordable living space in Trebnje, Slovenia. The worst affected and no doubt why the designs and colour schemes were directed in the way they are is towards the younger more upwardly mobile generations who are likely to be struggling to get onto the housing market.
The design is based on two containers placed on top of each other with the upper unit overhanging the entrance giving shade and a pathway area while the other side creates a patio or rear terrace. With the way the containers are positioned it also allows a small roof deck type balcony to be available on the upper floor via sliding glass doors.
The staircase has been designed in a minimalistic way which suits the design and age group of the buyers the home is aimed at. With the added floor to ceiling windows although small and compact I can see the appeal of this style of home.
Doesn’t look like much in the photo below but as you see the end result is a nice retreat in the wilderness allowing natural cooling,ventilation and also importantly functional.
What I liked about the design is that’s its all been done on a practical basis with no money wasted on things not needed. I also like the raised deck as it allows water to pass underneath in heavy rain but also would help with cooling the building. The roof deck is also a great idea for seating as well as clothes drying etc. This shipping container building is used as a research facility in a rainforest that is only accessible on a small dirt track used by wood loggers in Northern Queensland. So getting things there as well as being able to build the facility with limited tools made the shipping containers ideal for this role. The other thing you will notice on the left hand side of the building below is that a rainwater harvesting system has been introduced for the needs of the facility. Another important factor for it being on stilts by the way is its location as there are many snakes as well as white tail rats. On top of that building on stilts also means you don’t have to level the ground which in this instance was also very important as they didn’t want to cause soil erosion.
To read more about the design and see more of the photos of the building being built please take a look at their site here.
As space becomes expensive and the way property and land got expensive before the slump although going to climb again at some point it does make sense to maximise your working environment especially when most business rates taxes are based on size of the place your using. Having a small carbon footprint as well as a small land foot print will help keep costs down and your business more viable.
In this case a single unit that is not only small and practical but also off grid. Its power generation comes from solar and boasts a roof deck as well as a green roof space. On the inside recycled materials add a flair of design and colour to the building and I can see this being very practical for many people especially those working at home who just want a unit at the bottom of the garden 9 – 5.
credit: Harry Wakefield of Mocoloco