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Off Grid 2030 winner: Ventanilla House

A multigenerational home responding to the unique climactic conditions and constraints of Lima, Peru, was overall winner of this year's Norbord SterlingOSB Zero/RIBAJ competition

The central courtyard with hydroponic garden both cools the home and provides sustenance.
The central courtyard with hydroponic garden both cools the home and provides sustenance.
  • Family and live/work or entertaining spaces are separated by the courtyard.
    Family and live/work or entertaining spaces are separated by the courtyard.
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Ventanilla House by Kevin Sulca
 
This multigenerational home responding to the unique climactic conditions and context constraints of Lima, Peru, emerged as winner in the face of stiff competition. In a sensitive and well-researched way, this proposal addressed issues affecting Lima’s Ventanilla district (the area with the least green space in the city and where the precariousness of housing made for uncomfortable conditions during the pandemic), standing out as a simple but original and tangible response to the brief. 
 
The proposal is a 6m x 13.5m OSB family home with central patio, divided by two staggered blocks: rear for family, front for visitors. In between is a hydroponic garden for growing vegetables for family consumption ‘in order to reduce crowds in the markets …building agricultural spaces at home is an effective way to reduce the ecological footprint of food production,’ states Sulca.
 
Horizontally sliding library-style OSB shelves on wheels and rails offer flexible uses on each floor: separated they create a workspace, joined they form a table. This mobile shelving unit was praised for its ingenuity. ‘Using furniture as wall, that’s a great idea, you can move it but it still has purpose,’ said Kristofer Adelaide.
  • The model home makes a liveable suburb from one of the least green and challenging areas in Lima.
    The model home makes a liveable suburb from one of the least green and challenging areas in Lima.
  • The home accommodates relaxation while encouraging movement between its spaces.
    The home accommodates relaxation while encouraging movement between its spaces.
  • Hydroponics cool the interior space as well as generating food for the domestic unit.
    Hydroponics cool the interior space as well as generating food for the domestic unit.
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Pertinently, the design incorporates a disinfection room accessed prior to entering the main house. Likewise there is an exclusive visitor area, to create a safely socially-distanced space away from the family. The house is also laid out with the intention of encouraging circulation and mobility, countering a sedentary lifestyle. As such, it deals with space in a novel and interesting way.
 
The entry was convincing, unusual in context, visually strong, political, cognisant of climatic conditions and an all-round robust response to the brief. ‘It’s not derivative in any way,’ commented Stephen Proctor. ‘It comes out of an exploration of a different way of living.’ 

Off Grid 2030 was produced in association with Norbord

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