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T2 House / Antonio Ravalli Architetti

  • Architects: Antonio Ravalli Architetti
  • Location: Ferrara, Italy
  • Architects: Antonio Ravalli Architetti
  • Project Team: Antonio Ravalli, Simone Pelliconi, Mauro Crepaldi, Giuseppe Crispino, Valentina Milani, Lorenzo Masini
  • Area: 110.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2010
  • Photographs: Antonio Ravalli Architetti

© Antonio Ravalli Architetti © Antonio Ravalli Architetti © Antonio Ravalli Architetti © Antonio Ravalli Architetti

From the architect. Conditions

A small triangular area

100 m2 of building capacity

A conspicuous, even though not valuable, presence of trees

A strongly reduced investment possibility

A client who balances his life between Italia and Africa, where he deals with active cooperation

This leads to the idea of interbreeding the performance characteristics and the intrinsic qualities of Western buildings with the craftiness and simplicity (and thus the cheapness) of African ones.

A self-building system is chosen, though it’s a high performance one, especially under energetic aspects.

© Antonio Ravalli Architetti
© Antonio Ravalli Architetti


The choice of a simple, light and cheap technology: wood. Fir laminated timber beams and OSB panels

The trees (with their shadow, and thus coolness) generate the house geometry, which remains anyway simple and Cartesian

The methods with which roots are cutted and looked after establish the proximity of the building to the greenery which surrounds and covers it

The falling of the leaves on the building determines the roof geometry

Gutters can’t be used

© Antonio Ravalli Architetti
© Antonio Ravalli Architetti

The exact position of the broad-leaved trees determines the place of the openings in order to obtain shading in summer and a positive greenhouse effect in winter

The adopted materials are reduced so as to avoid to teach the client how to work with new technologies

© Antonio Ravalli Architetti
© Antonio Ravalli Architetti


A brick-blocks structure conceived as two counterposed C constitutes the spine of the house and ensures its earthquake-proof performances

The copper covering envelopes the whole building defining the interface with the contiguous vegetation

The structural frames, made of laminated timber beams, fit their pace on the panels dimension; less waste, more saving

The glazed surfaces use the vertical beams in place of the window frames, with the help of structural silicone glue and glass clamps

The winter thermal response is optimized by a combination of a programmable fireplace with forced airflow exchanger, together with a continuous thermal insulation realized with a ventilated reflecting mattress, used in aerospace engineering (there’s anyway, in reserve, a more traditional methane boiler combined with a radiant floor heat panels system)

The ‘Rothoblaas’ patent permits to joint all the pieces of the timber structure with simple patented screws

© Antonio Ravalli Architetti
© Antonio Ravalli Architetti

Project drawings look closer to IKEA instructions rather than classic working ones.

The most powerful screwdriver available is bought on e-bay.

The works begin.

Cite:"T2 House / Antonio Ravalli Architetti" 23 Sep 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>