Solar House Days @ Institute of Architects

Sometimes you hear about stuff for years before you do it. That was me and hot air ballooning. Over the last two weekends I have got on a bus with about fifty people and went touring Canberra houses that have great solar and environmental footprint. The tour is run through the Australian Institute of Architects and a group of linked sponsors and the tour includes visits to five homes on each trip, At each house they had the some of the owners, builders and designer/architects to talk visitors and answer questions.
The awesome aspects of the days were the range of homes visited and the genuine passion of the participants for the developments in sensible housing. We went to award winning Japanese influenced contemporary design through strictly controlled heritage restorations to down-sizer friendly new modular homes. The discussion at the various homes was a true education. Debates flowed about slab arrangement, window single, double and triple glazing options, heat storage, insulation of various types and a vast retinue of other topics. Rarely have I had such a constantly stimulating education experience,
It impressed me that the one I think was the most expensive I thought was gloomy, cold, dreadful and almost unlivable and the rashackle DIY in progress was cheerful functional and oozed potential when complete. I so enjoyed the thing I plan to go again next year.
Some useful websites
http://www.jigsawhousing.com.au/blog/solar-house-day-showcasing-sustainable-living
http://www.see-change.org.au/house-tours/
Some pics
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