• "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure"

    - Benjamin Franklin

  • "Climate change is the biggest thing that humans have ever done on this planet. The one thing that needs to be even bigger is our movement to stop it"

    - Bill McKibben

  • "If you really think the environment is less important than the economy, try holding your breath while you count your money"

    - Dr. Guy McPherson

  • "Most of us are aware that scientists say climate change is underway, but even if we accept it as true we act as if it had no implications"

    - Prof Naomi Oreskes

  • "The Earth was much warmer than today in the early Cenozoic period. It was so warm that there were no ice sheets on the planet and sea level was about 75 meters higher"

    - Prof James Hansen

  • "The human-made rate of change of atmospheric Co2 is ten thousand times larger than the natural rate that drove the climate changes of the past"

    - Prof James Hansen

  • "If we could catch one five thousandth part of the energy that the sun sprays onto this globe every day we would meet all of the energy requirements of humanity"

    - Sir David Attenborough, 2015

  • "I'd put money on the sun and solar energy, what a source of power. I hope we wont have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that"

    - Thomas Edison, 1931

  • "Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek"

    - Barak Obama

  • "The warnings about global warming have been extremely clear for a long time. We are facing a global climate crisis. It is deepening and we are entering a period of consequences"

    - Al Gore, 2006

  • "We shall need a new way of thinking if humanity is to survive"

    - Albert Einstein, 1954

  • "Admit nothing into your home that is neither useful nor beautiful."

    - William Morris

  • "Now I see the secret of the making of the best persons. It is to grow in the open air and eat and sleep with the earth."

    - Walt Whitman

  • "Water is good; it benefits all things and does not compete with them. It dwells in lowly places that all disdain. That is why it is so near to Tao"

    - Lao Tzu

  • "Simplicity and repose are the qualities that measure the true value of any work of art"

    - Frank Lloyd Wright

  • "The truth of a vessel lies not in that of which it is made; it lies in the space contained within"

    - Lao Tze

  • "Study Nature, Love Nature, stay close to Nature. It will never fail you."

    - Frank Lloyd Wright

  • "That which is boundless in you abides in the mansion of the sky, whose door is the morning mist, and whose windows are the songs and the silences of the night"

    - Kahlil Gibran

  • "Your house is your larger body. It grows in the sun and sleeps in the stillness of the night; yet it is not dreamless. Does not your house dream? And dreaming, leave the city for grove or hilltop?"

    - Kahlil Gibran

  • "Build of your imaginings a bower in the wilderness ere you build a house within the city walls."

    - Kahlil Gibran

  • "Would that I could gather your houses into my hand, and like a sower scatter them in forest and meadow."

    - Kahlil Gibran

  • "Would the valleys were your streets, and the green paths your alleys, that you might seek one another through vinyards, and come with the fragrance of the earth in your garments."

    - Kahlil Gibran

  • "After you have exhausted what there is in business, politics, conviviality, and so on – have found that none of these fully satisfy, or permanently wear – what remains?’ Nature remains"

    - Walt Whitman

  • "Everything in the world may be endured except continued prosperity."

    - Wolfgang von Goethe

Solar Estate


About This Project

This is a design with a quite ambitious goal.

One goal is to combine solar passive and solar active elements. And in particular a powerful solar active element – no less than 32 solar photovoltaic panels on the roof of this design – far more than is necessary to power a normal 3 bedroom house.

In pursuit of this goal the entire roof of the house is given over to solar panels, and the roof – and the house under it – is sized to fit under the solar PV roof.

The second goal was to design a house that a housebuilder might consider building. So, a more conventional looking residence (than Solarity is used to) with a pitched roof and what looks like a large chimney stack (but which is actually a stack vent).

This design has three double bedrooms with ensuites. The design of the bedroom accommodation is stackable – it can go up a storey height to give five bedrooms – but what that might look like we are not convinced of at this point.

The Lounge is in a single storey block on the rear of this house. Being single storey and flat roofed this element can easily be made larger or smaller without interfering with the planning of the rest of the house.

The pitched roof has massive gutters and downpipes to harvest rainfall. The windows to the upstairs bedrooms are small as these rooms are the least used rooms in a house. Conversely the rooms to the Lounge are generous – to receive solar passive heat inputs. The roof over the Lounge is extended into broadly overhanging eaves to shade out the high hot sun of summer. Inside there are elements of heavy masonry, to help cool the house in hot weather.

Solarity’s leaf designs are a much more harmonious combination of solar passive and active elements, but the active element is limited in scope on a leaf. This design while giving a much greater potential for active solar, appears as transitional and not entirely comfortable phase between a conventional pitched roof house and one of our single storey flat-roofed solar passive/active designs. It may be that the single storey designs, with tracking solar arrays adjoining, may be a more harmonious option.