Huangshan Villa

Location Huangshan, China
Services Sustainable design
Sector Residential
Client Confidential
Architect a_a&d architects

Joe Tang

T +852 5806 1500

Cundall was appointed alongside a_a&d architects to provide environmental optimisation for a countryside villa in the famous Huangshan Mountain area. Works included thermal comfort, energy consumption and renewable energy cost-benefit analysis.

The building has been fully refurbished to be as close to passive as possible within the constraints of budget and local construction expertise. Large openings throughout provide natural ventilation and passive cooling. New high-performance double glazing is protected by motorised external venetian blinds and balconies to reduce summer heat gain and reduce cooling loads whilst trapping the heat from the winter sun through the large south facing windows.

The bare concrete shell was wrapped with external insulation, with great care taken to ensure thermal bridges were eliminated wherever possible and air-tightness maintained. The rear wall of the property was dug into the hillside and insulation levels were optimised to take advantage of the temperature stabilising effect of the ground contact wall.

A heat-recovery ventilation system, coupled with high efficiency air source heat-pump heating and cooling system was used to deal with days when the mountain climate is too extreme for passive conditioning. 

Finally, a photovoltaic array was sized and optimised following a cost-benefit analysis - this provides the home with free energy, and battery back-up for when the local rural power grid suffers from brown-outs.