Practice / Staff

When we think of zero carbon in our building stock, there’s an assumption it’s about householders’ gas and electricity bills. Embodied carbon in building materials and the construction are becoming recognised too as important. However, when our homes no longer meet our needs, then we’re obliged to alter them or move, which has direct and indirect consumption impacts. Our WholeLife House project explores these issues by building for long-term low-impact adaptation. This is a built prototype that was one of the winning entries of the design competition for Scotland’s Housing Expo in 2011. It is designed with a two storey core with living room kitchen and two bedrooms. It has an adaptable annexe that shares its entrance with the core household but allows for varying degrees of independence, as a workplace, bedsit for rent, or an annexe for younger or older household members. There are no load bearing partitions and plumbing and drainage allow for both known and unknown household changes. Although ten years old, COVID-19 asks of our homes to become workplaces and the WholeLife House still provides a clear vision of what this might be.

Whole Life House: Expo Street View.
John Brennan

Garden view with adaptable annexe.
John Brennan

Adaptation Concept.
John Brennan

House core interior.
John Brennan

East elevation to street.
John Brennan