Sarah McLeary

Ceramics and Architecture

Scotland Housing Expo

In a suburb of Inverness, a very strange array of houses has been built. Architects from all over Scotland have designed one off [but repeatable] dwellings for families, with a strong emphasis on sustainable living. They don’t necessarily fit together, although they are grouped into rough catagories such as ‘Houses that are S shaped’ and ‘Houses that have a workshop oot the back’. There is also a catagory for ‘Houses that have flowers laser etched all over them’ but luckily that is a catagory of one. We went on an office trip this week, the five of us in one car [very sustainable we thought] very early in the morning and got back late at night. In the middle we walked around all the houses ‘on show’ and had a good old criticise of the main failings as well as a good old cheer at the many successes.

The BIG IDEAS included

  • using the roof space in the bedrooms – so a sort of built in cabin bed idea. Tonnes of storage!
  • double height spaces – were these in the brief? Some were great; extra internal windows into bedrooms; links from upper living levels etc. Some were just a big old waste of space; You could have fitted a second bedroom in one of the houses!
  • BIG BIG windows, which are great for the temperate [ha!] climate in the Highlands. Although I think these are a briliant idea, I do worry that when the houses are inhabited – after August – the area will become a bit of a spot for Architects taking photos. Those huge picture windows into your downstairs bedroom may not seem so smart then.
  • workshops at the end of the garden – this is my idea of bliss. One had a space under the house for this, I could just imagine where I’d install the kiln 🙂

On the way home we did a bit of Atrocity Tourism at the Battleground of Culloden.

Gareth Hoskins’ visitor’s centre

and some Atrocity Tourism of another kind at the Maggie’s Centre by Page & Park

It was a wonderful day out! My brain is so full of houses now… got to go for a nice relaxing sit in the sunshine. More info on individual plots at the Housing Expo TO FOLLOW!

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This entry was posted on August 20, 2010 by in architecture.
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