Techstyle Haus: An 800 Square Foot Fabric House That Uses 90% Less Energy

The planters filter rainwater, which is then reused to grow edible plants. Photovoltaic panels are arrayed along the curved roof. Image © Kristen Pelou

The Rhode Island School Of Design, Brown University and the University of Applied Sciences Erfurt, collaborated on a passive “fabric” house for the 2014 Solar Decathlon Europe (which just wrapped up this month – see the winners here). In the following article, originally published on Metropolis MagazineMartin Pedersen reviews the remarkable house.

This summer’s 2014 Solar Decathlon Europe is well underway in France, where a solar-powered village of twenty sustainable homes designed and built by college students from all over the country, has emerged on the grounds of the Palace of Versailles. Students from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), Brown University, and the University of Applied Sciences Erfurt, Germany, have teamed up for Techstyle Haus, an 800-square-foot house that’s not only a model of energy efficiency but an elegant piece of design as well.

Extension of the St. Jean de Vedas Technical Center / Chrystelle Sanaa

© Marie-Caroline Lucat

Architects: Chrystelle Sanaa
Location: Avenue de Librilla, ,
Area: 250 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Marie-Caroline Lucat

Hub Creatic / Tetrarc Architects

© Stéphane Chalmeau

Architects: Tetrarc Architects
Location: ,
Area: 6,520 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Stéphane Chalmeau

Centre Culturel Lesigny / Atelier208

© A. Leclercq

Architects: Atelier208
Location: , France
Design And Building Team: Chloé & Meyer Oiknine, Thibault Guillaneau, Diego Ibad, N. Maslier
Area: 350 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: A. Leclercq

Maitres Vignerons / Vincent Coste

© Florent Joliot

Architects: Vincent Coste
Location: ,
Project Manager: Jérôme Garzon pour Vincent Coste Design Studio et associés
Year: 2014
Photographs: Florent Joliot

Childcare Centre in Lomme / Colboc Franzen & Associés

© Stephan Lucas

Architects: Colboc Franzen & Associés
Location: ,
Partners In Charge: Benjamin Colboc, Manuela Franzen, Arnaud Sachet
Design Team: Ulrich Faudry, Guillaume Choplain
Area: 1,277 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Stephan Lucas, Olivier Wogenscky

Maison A3 / Vincent Coste

© Azur

Architects: Vincent Coste
Location: Toulon,
Area: 200.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Toulon Azur

Solar Decathlon Europe Announces Winners of its 2014 Contest

Rhome for Dencity / Rhome (Rome, Italy). Image © Solar Decathlon Europe /

On Saturday night, the awards were announced in the 2014 Solar Decathlon Europe, which is currently ongoing in the grounds of the Versailles Palace in France. The competition challenges university teams to build and run a full scale solar powered house, with awards being judged on a range of requirements including factors, architecture and comfort, with a different jury of three experts judging each requirement.

The overall winner, based on a combination of all the factors, was “Rhome for Dencity”, by the team from Roma Tre University, with a proposal that seeks to ”re-densify and re-qualify the boundaries of Rome” by applying principles of density and sustainability to this area where ”housing, country, archaeology and illegal buildings are interwoven.”

Read on after the break for images of all the winners

Epée de Bois – Nursery / h2o architectes

© Julien Attard

Architects: h2o architectes
Location: 5 Rue de l’Épée de Bois, ,
Area: 300 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Julien Attard

Auditorium Of Bondy & Radio France Choral Singing Conservatory / PARC Architectes

© 11h45

Architects: PARC Architectes
Location: , France
Area: 1,800 sqm
Photographs: 11h45

La Fromagerie / Vincent Coste

© Toulon Azur

Architects: Vincent Coste
Location: Aix-en-Provence,
Year: 2014
Photographs: Toulon Azur

AD Round Up: Happy Bastille Day!

Nova Green / Agence Bernard Bühler. Image © Vincent Monthiers

The fourteenth of July is Bastille Day, a day that commemorates the start of the French Revolution.  Named for the fortress prison that was stormed by revolutionaries on July 14th, 1789, Bastille Day is celebrated globally both by France and her former colonies, as well as many cities in the US.  In honor of this historic date, we’ve compiled some of our favorite French projects from the past few years.  In this round up you’ll find classics such as the Villa dall’Ava by OMA, as well as fantastic works like Nova Green by Agence Bernard Bühler, Pontivy Media Library and Louviers Music school by Opus 5 architectes, Platform Architecture’s Aquitanis Headquarters, L’Atoll Angers by Antonio Virga Architecte and AAVP Architecture, a Parking Attendant’s Pavilion by Jean-Luc Fugier, Kengo Kuma’s Aix en Provence Conservatory of Music, and Origami by Manuelle Gautrand ArchitectureJoyeux quatorze juillet!

GL Events Headquarters / Studio Odile Decq

© Roland Halbe

Architects: Studio Odile Decq
Location: 59 Quai Rambaud, 69002 , France
Artist: Felice Varini
Area: 8300.0 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: Roland Halbe,

Aix en Provence Conservatory of Music / Kengo Kuma and Associates

© Roland Halbe

Architects: Kengo Kuma and Associates
Location: ,
Design Team: Kengo Kuma, Diego Lopez Arahuetes, Miruna Constantinescu, Natalia Sanz, Elise Fauquenbergue, Miguel Orellana, Junki Wakuda, Tristan Zelic, Magnus Casselbrant, Ioanna Angelidou, Yuki Ito, Emilie Bret, Majid Katir, Roman Martin, Dennis Cheung, Chao Chen
Area: 1,796 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Roland Halbe

Block 32 / Tectoniques Architects

© On Stage

Architects: Tectoniques Architects
Location: La Duchère, ,
Area: 5,241 sqm
Year: 2014
Photographs: On Stage

Maison L2 / Vincent Coste

© Florent Joliot

Architects: Vincent Coste
Location: Saint-Tropez,
Chef De Projet: Estelle Hondier
Area: 200 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Florent Joliot

Médiathèque du Bourget / Randja – Farid Azib Architects

© Luc Boegly

Architects: Randja – Farid Azib Architects
Location: ,
Design Team: Farid Azib, Amélie Lengrand, Emilie Forget, Mélanie Surjon
Area: 750.0 sqm
Year: 2013
Photographs: Luc Boegly

The Paris Debate: Must Preservation Inhibit Urban Renewal?

La Samaritaine was once ’ most famous department store. Image © Wikipedia

What is the preservationist’s role in our modernizing world? According to Michael Allen of Next City, preservationists exist to ensure that redevelopment meets both cultural heritage and economic demands. Read his entire article, originally published on Next City, below.