Contributing Monkie V Ol Blak
Published on November 3, 2011
If your a treehugging hemp wearing greeny, you should be cave shopping right now. Forget about living in the typical stick built boxes, all the drones call home. The greenest houses on the planet are caves, ask any bat. No insulation needed, earth quake proof, extremely low energy bills, and oh so quite. But, no one but a nut wants to actually live in a cave, right. I mean you would have to be just a little off, like one of those people who actually think doing their business in a bucket is progressive. For us Monkies, we love the bonus sides of cave living and hate the down sides. The no style, no light, drippy ceilings, no right angles and bat guano. But if you could combine the cave DNA with modern architecture, we monkies would be all over it. That is exactly what the architecture firm Productora has done with their House in Chihuahua.
By Productora: The House in Chihuahua is part of a golf club community in the desert like northern region of Mexico. The dwelling was designed to accommodate the special climatic circumstances of the area, since the differences between day time and night time temperatures can vary by as much as twenty degrees. To balance these extreme temperature differences, we partially buried the house into the mountain slope to take advantage of the soil’s thermal mass.
Since the plot is situated in a traditional style allotment, one of the community rules stated that at least 80% of the roofs had to be inclined, so people wouldn’t build’ ‘modern’ architecture. We reinterpreted that rule and made the complete roof as one continuous surface with different inclinations. From the street side the building is only perceived as a single height volume, but upon entering this seemingly simple volume, the circulation spirals down and spaces become more complex in their shape and conformation.
The interiors are organized around a series of patios and roof openings that provide light and ventilation and allow spectacular views towards the surrounding landscape. The rooms and terraces of the dwelling are sculptured according to their specific needs and placement in the house: from deep rectangular patios to amorphous shaped terraces all the spaces find their place beneath the giant sloped roof which acts as a new artificial topography in the rough landscape.