A collaboration between acclaimed French designer Philippe Starck and Slovenian timberengineering specialists Riko will see the partners’ first sustainable prefabricated wooden house completed later this year.
It will be first Democratic Ecological Architecture with Riko by Starck (DEARS) home. DEARS will be industrially manufactured wooden houses totally customisable to a client’s individual requirements and designed around nine key principles from carbon neutrality to state-of-the-art technology.
The timber theme extends beyond the fabric of the houses with high-quality wood fibre or paper pulp being used as wall insulation. This will then be complemented with specially engineered glass facades including triple glazing and composite blinds with the same wood insulation used for floor and roof elements.
Democratic Eco Houses will also feature the direct use of solar energy through photo-voltaic panels concealed on the roof, with any excess electricity sellable to a local electricity supplier. Energy efficiency is also enhanced through heat pumps and chillers that use outside air in all seasons, along with the incorporation of wind turbines.
Home buyers can customise the type of roofing used, heating methods, the shapes of supporting columns and means of wall or floor finishing. Clients can also choose between various light fittings, types of kitchens and bathroom equipment.
The real appeal comes in the speed of construction. After the initial infrastructure work on a build, the foundation is laid after which the erection of the house takes just four to seven days.
After the frame of the house is completed, interior and exterior finishing work will take roughly three more weeks. Therefore, the entire house can be built in just two months, an amount of time that would still serve as the beginning of the building process using traditional methods.
Such significant time savings enables the team to focus on improving the quality of the finishing work. Rigorously controlled engineered production enhances the accuracy of components and reduces the chance for errors.
The prototype steel-framed house is under construction in Versailles and will feature five bedrooms, a combined kitchen, dining and living area and a terrace and swimming pool.