Cork House: RIBA National Award Winner 2019

by | Jul 4, 2019 | General

Cork House by Matthew Barnett Howland with Dido Milne and Oliver Wilton has won the RIBA South Award 2019, the RIBA South Sustainability Award 2019 – sponsored by Michelmersh and the RIBA National Award 2019.

Designed with immense attention to detail, Cork House is a structure of great ingenuity. Sited within the area of a Grade II Listed mill house dating back to the early nineteenth century, the Cork House beautifully reflects and respects the natural surroundings in form and construction. The ‘whole-life approach’ to sustainability truly sets this project apart. Designed, tested and developed in partnership with The Bartlett School of Architecture UCL, they have delivered a project that is the first of its kind.

An entirely cork construction, with solid structural cork walls and roof, the building has exceptionally low whole life carbon. The biogenic construction of prefabricated cork blocks and engineered timber is carbon negative at completion and has remarkably low whole life carbon. All the components can be reused or recycled, and the expanded cork blocks have been made using by-product and waste from cork forestry and the cork stopper industry. Internally, the biophilic elements such as the exposed cork and oak flooring captures the light and creates a wonderfully tranquil sensory experience. In summer the skylights open to bring a sense of lightness to the space and in winter the snug interiors emanate a sense of warmth and protection. As sustainability becomes integral to all construction, this development pushes us further to look beyond the requirements and aspire to really integrate ourselves with nature.

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