Building for Sustainability and Survival

The Sunshower SSIP house has 1,050 square feet of living space, including two bedrooms and two baths, as well as an ample outdoor area where a wind turbine can be mounted. View a high resolution version of the floorplan .

The front elevation of the Sunshower SSIP model serves multiple purposes: On top, it supports a solar panel array; in front, openings give visibility to the structural panels and allow in light and air; and “there’s definitely a playful element” to the design, says architect Judith Kinnard, who adds that the yellow might suggest the sun’s rays.

The lot on which the Sunshower SSIP model sits runs North-South, so the design allowed for solar panels—mounted above the house’s front façade and tilted at a 30-degree angle—to have maximum exposure to sunlight.

Subs cut spaces into insulated panels for windows. Some 60 vendors donated products and installation services for the project.

Because the competition permitted only a few windows, the winning design brought more air and light into the interior of the house by installing a series of sliding-glass doors into the walls.

A small kitchen is laid out to provide a modicum of privacy to the homeowner. The same is true of the bedrooms, one of which has direct access to one of the bathrooms.

The house’s rainwater catchment system that has the capacity to store up to 1,000 gallons of water.

A rear view of the Sunshower SSIP model. The sponsors of the competition plan to build out the designs of the seven other contestants.

The house’s building envelope consists of structural steel insulated panels, over which James Hardie-supplied siding was installed. This was the first time architect Judith Kinnard designed a house using SIPs.

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