The ecovillage is a living system designed to offer a rich and
sustainable, sharing and natural lifestyle to its community members. An
ecovillage plans for self sufficiency, taking guidance from the
its capacity to provide food, energy, resources and food
for the soul.
In designing ecovillages, Soft Loud House Architects combine the sense of place with the client’s specific requirements, creating a set of unique guiding principles that shape the design of the village and each element of building and infrastructure work to become a part of it. A key design ideal is to create an interwoven cluster of public and private spaces where people can live with care and respect for each other and the environment.
Some of the ecovillage and cohousing projects we have under development are:
“Dulaiwurrong Village” Eltham
Created as a sustainable haven in the midst of the car orientated suburbs, Dulaiwurrong Village is a place of community connectedness and sharing, a short walk from the Eltham station. Residents share a community vegetable garden and orchard, and manage “Maggies Farm”, a village hall and function space in the heart of the development. 28 houses cluster around the village green, with house and lot sizes varied to provide a balanced demographic.
The village masterplan was created by Soft Loud House Architects in association with Jo Henry – Landscape Architect, Graeme George – Earthcare Permaculture, and Savaad Wells – Building Designer, in 2003. “Eltham style” was used as the theme for the development, relating the development to the picturesque Monsalvat village and the pioneering days of mudbrick in Eltham in the 1950’s. Soft Loud House Architects developed a design handbook to guide residents in the sustainable design of their own dwellings, and prepared concept designs for seven individual dwellings. These designs demonstrated how to build in ethical and sustainable materials including strawbale, timber, rammed earth and mudbrick. Planning approval was attained in 2006. The public areas of the site, including services, roads and community facilities commenced construction in June 2008.
“Malt Farm Ecovillage” Merton
Creation of an ecovillage for 100 families surrounded by a biodynamic educational farm, where school classes and other groups learn about organic and biodynamic farming.
In association with Max Lindegger, Patrick Dowling and Ian Cuming, Soft Loud House Architects prepared a masterplan for the 350-acre biodynamic farm and ecovillage, incorporating forestry, grazing, cropping, intensive fruit, vegetable and herb growing areas and a series of farm and educational buildings for the site in 2008. Awaiting next stage of development.
The Belgrave Cohousing Project
Creation of cohousing design for 15 – 20 dwellings with shared kitchen, dining, lounge, visitor accommodation, vegetable gardens, orchards and recreation areas close to central Belgrave, in the Dandenong Ranges region of Victoria. Concept design options submitted to planning October 2008.
Tasman Village, Nubeena
The Tasman Village is designed around an existing central hub which offers short stay accommodation, a licensed café, conference venue, pool, spa, sauna, games room, BBQ area, natural therapy rooms and gym facilities. Residents will benefit from small land lots with minimal maintenance, large open public spaces and rural aspects, community organic/biodynamic vegetable gardens and orchards, independent renewable energy resources and waste and water management. Community gathering spaces are a feature, selected for their beautiful coastal views and connection with nature. Lots on sale from October 2008, for more information see www.tasmanvillage.com.au