Underground Home

A barn conversion and extension with a difference. The barn is sandwiched between a road and the edge of the council's development boundary, meaning a traditional extension would be unacceptable. It was therefore proposed that the extension be constructed underground, with a green roof planted up as a garden. Windows and glazed doors look out into lightwells with stone faced, planted embankments and sun pipes bring additional daylight in through the green roof above to light the circulation space and bathroom.

The underground extension is naturally well insulated by the earth surrounding it. Below ground it remains at a fairly constant temperature all the year round, making the extension warm in winter and cool in the summer. It also provides great sound insulation, blocking out traffic and other unwanted external noise. A double layer of damproofing - waterproof concrete and a waterproof plastic membrane - ensure that the extension stays dry.

Instead of conventional solar panels which would have spoiled the traditional appearance of the barn, reflective solar tubes were installed in the garden to provide the house with a source of sustainable, renewable energy. Water pipes run through these tubes and the water is heated by the sunlight and then stored in a conventional hot water tank, with an oil fired boiler providing back up where necessary.






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New house under construction in Lostwithiel. RRAS provided Building Regulation detail drawings, tender and contract admin services.


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Conversion of Spa Hotel

Conversion of Hotel to Holiday Apartments.


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