Lime Kiln Croft, Ontario, New Canadian Interior, Real Estate Architects, Building Photos
Lime Kiln Croft in Ontario
13 Dec 2022
Architecture: Solares Architecture
Location: Ontario, Canada
Photos by Nanne Springer
Lime Kiln Croft, Canada
Lime Kiln Croft is a rural retirement home nestled in rolling hills with pastoral views and spectacular sunsets. The key goals for this budget-conscious design were to create a highly energy efficient and low-carbon home, provide ample space to pursue hobbies, accommodate visiting family and friends, and enable our clients to age-in-place. In addition, the house is designed to “follow the light” such that each space is adorned with sunlight at precisely the time of day it is most used.
Large windows in every room have all been thoughtfully positioned to frame views of rolling farm fields, stands of majestic trees, and ribbons of brown country road edged with iconic wood-post fences. Sunlight floods the house all day long.
This project shows that some of the best ways to achieve an energy efficient, low-carbon home are the simplest: good layout, passive solar design, and selecting more cost-effective technologies.
This home is designed with a simple building footprint—a rectangle—and enormous care was taken with the proportions of the rooms and positioning of the windows. From the outside, with its black corrugated steel cladding, this house has a sophisticated modern barn aesthetic. On the interior is a gentle, sunlit home with space for all the elements of our clients’ lifestyle.
At the front, there is a deep two-car garage with a main door for cars and a side door at the rear for motorcycles. The main entrance can be reached by the front door or through the garage. Down the hall on the one level is the east-facing primary bedroom, a large west-facing quilting studio, and the south-facing great room with windows on three sides and a screened porch.
Thoughtful window placement means the eye is always drawn to beautiful views outside. A large window in the great room lines up with the main hallway, welcoming you into the main living space from the front entrance.
The house is designed to take advantage of a slope in the land, with the north portion of the basement fully below grade and the south portion partially below grade. The south side of this lower level is home to the guest suite: two bedrooms and a rec room with kitchenette, which is graced with large south-facing windows that bring in abundant sunlight. The north side contains the mechanical room and the cold cellar.
The decor style is a blend of modern farmhouse and Scandinavian minimalism. The white walls and cabinets, sleek light fixtures, and matte black framing of the windows and primary bathroom shower stall are Scandinavian in feel; and the rich walnut-coloured wood flooring, Shaker style cabinetry, and details like wrought-iron, leaf-shaped cabinet handles in the primary bedroom are farmhouse-inspired.
Lime Kiln Croft is an all-electric, low-carbon home designed with a straight-forward and cost-effective structure and was expertly built by Dennison Homes. The foundation is poured concrete with insulated concrete forms (ICFs), the framing is standard 2×6” wood planks, and there are engineered wood stud floor trusses (built in an open web for running ducts and services). In keeping with the local agricultural aesthetic, the house is clad in 7/8” corrugated black steel.
One of the best ways to achieve high energy efficiency on a small budget, especially for an all-electric house, is to take great care with the insulation and airtightness of the building envelope. To achieve that, this project uses insulated concrete forms (ICF), six inches of insulation below the slab, Huber’s Zip system for exterior walls and the roof, mineral wool insulation between studs, and three-inches of EPS insulation on the exterior.
Windows and doors are high-performance, triple-pane units by Eurovinyl, and Aerobarrier gave the building envelope the final seal. The result is a final air-tightness reading of 0.59 air changes per hour, which is very close to Passive House standard.
To reduce the use of spray foam insulation, and to reduce the cost of the roof and amount of conditioned space, blown-in-cellulose was used to insulate the upper side of the ceiling, instead of spray-foaming the entire underside of the roof. For more information about this approach, and how we installed potlights without undermining the building envelope, read the Envelope post in our Lime Kiln Croft Case Study.
The home uses two air source heat pumps, one for each floor. The hot water heater is by Rheem Canada, and the energy recovery ventilator (ERV) is by Lifebreath.
How is the project unique?
We design a super air-tight building envelope with minimal spray foam insulation, and a reduced roof area to insulate. We did this by insulating above the ceiling instead of the underside of the roof. A unique ceiling detail creates a well-sealed “mini drop ceiling” to accommodate electrical runs and pot-lights.
Lime Kiln Croft in Ontario, Canada – Building Information
Design: Solares Architecture – https://www.solares.ca/
Project size: 1350 ft2
Completion date: 2021
Building levels: 2
Photography: Nanne Springer
Lime Kiln Croft, Ontario images / information received 131222
Location: Vaughan, Ontario, Canada, North America
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Comments / photos for the Lime Kiln Croft, Ontario design by Solares Architecture page welcome