Site progress – 30 january 2013

Internal walls

The living space has been subdivided this week transforming the large open space into three bedrooms and a large living room with Saint-Gobain’s drywall partitions. Effectively, the internal space is turning into a home, while poetically capturing the quality of the high ceilings and clerestory windows in order to contain their charm within each room. The light steel frames have been erected with layers of Rhinoboard and Cavitybatt being added for insulation.


Cutting the Cavitybatt to size


Inserting it between the light steel where it will later be sandwiched between the boards.


The top-hung opening window sections are being installed by Amoretti, allowing for the rest of the double glazing to be put in place and sealing off the building.

Tiling & external wall finishes

The exteriors of the building are also getting their touch ups now. External tiling is almost complete and the overhang ceiling has been installed. The Webber base coat (traditionally plaster) is being touched up before the final render (traditionally paint) gets applied to the ETICS walls.


The ETICS wall render sample with the Base Boat surrounding it.


The mesh reinforcement is applied along with the base coat to the exterior of the ETICS wall.


The Webber Base Coat being applied

Continuous surfaces for improved interior adaptability


The open space living room will soon be subdivided into the living room and bedrooms.

The pain of renovating and retrofitting

Anyone who has had to renovate the interior of a brick and mortar structure has surely thought ‘Never Again’! From maddening noise to extensive damage, the entire process is not only disturbing, but usually ends up taking much longer than predicted. This was one of our major concerns right from the onset; how to design a home that was not necessarily flexible on its edges, but was internally adaptable, and thereby useful over the long-term. 

Our approach

Because most renovations usually begin with the intention to free up some internal space and end up becoming extensive additions or alterations to the structure, our approach was to create an internal living space that could be divided into fewer or more rooms, as the needs of the occupants changed (for example the birth of a child or the need for an office space might result in a room being subdivided, or a single couple might prefer to remove one of the rooms to create a larger entertainment area). The focus was not to make a flexible outside shell, but rather to create an adaptable interior living space, where most of the demands on a home are placed and the need for spaces to change usually occurs most often.

The solution

Solving this challenge was the result of three strategies: 
1. Create continuous ceiling and floor surfaces in the living space
2. Support this more adaptable space with a ‘spine’ of services (kitchen and bathrooms)
3. Create an open plan living space that can be subdivided with partition drywalls 

Read more here.

The benefits

The major benefit to using continuous floor and ceiling surfaces is the overall lower cost (and potentially smaller headache) if future renovations are required. Because the subdivisions are made with drywalls, if a wall is moved or removed, the underlying floor and ceiling above are not severely damaged in the process. Slight touch-ups will return the surfaces to their ideal finish. In addition, installing drywalls is a faster process (quick to disassemble and recycle offsite), with less damage and mess (lightweight, pre-measured, compact) and easy to manage regular changes over the years as necessary.

Timber textures

The rich palette of textures provided by the natural stone and timber is slowly unifying the interior providing it with a warm feeling of ‘home’. The continuous surfaces created by the teak parquet, will soon hold the internal wall partitions that frame the internal rooms and which at a later stage can be taken down or moved, as future needs dictate, without destroying the continuous parquet floor or the ceiling.

14th site meeting  & progress

The first site meeting for 2014 was held today. Part of the meeting outlined the program for the next few weeks, during which time the final internal finishes, painting and landscaping will occur. The following posts document the progress thus far:

Rhinowood frames + glazing

Most of the Rhino Modified Wood frames have been installed along with their fixed panes of double glazing. The opening doors and windows will be installed next. All the frames have been painted.

Parquet flooring

Following the delivery of the Teak parquet, which will be installed over the next week. The main living space will be covered by the parquet, which will form a continuous surface upon which the internal partition walls will be placed afterwards. This allows for the walls to be removed at a later stage, without compromising the floor finish (the same philosophy applies to the Rhinolite ceiling.


Internal paint swatches

From the test swatches painted on one of the internal walls, the internal paint colour has been chosen. The colour on the left enhances the warm hues from the parquet and the stone cladding. 

Electrical work

Landscaping levels

Now that most of the heavy deliveries and construction work is over, the site levels will be slightly adjusted so that the veld grasses can be reseaded and the landscaping can begin to take root before the change of season.

Chameleon cabin makes innovative paper housing a reality

This nifty experimental house designed in collaboration by White arkitekter, the printer Göteborgstryckeriet and brand agency Happy F + B, in order to explore the limits of the material, takes Lego to the next level. Made out of Miniwell, a 2mm thick cardboard paper corrugate, the cut out and suspended structural components can be repeated to make the entire structure longer and easily assembled over any length. 

For more, have a look at the full article here:

Wishing our readers a great 2014