When we set out to design our studio we approached it like any design project, we began by identifying the priorities and creating a strategic framework to guide the decision making.
The initial priority was to create something simple to build, something sustainable, creatively inspiring and something that was cost effective. Through research it became clear that achieving these things was not necessarily difficult.
Sustainability quickly became a design focus, guiding our choices of materials, our approach to the build and our thinking around finishes.
Here’s a number of design decisions we made through the process that lead to our studio being recognised as Queensland’s most Sustainable Commercial Office Design and the best Commercial Office Design on the Sunshine Coast in 2014.
> We were building on a steep slope. By using steel poles we minimized the need for earth moving and instead worked with the natural contours of the land.
> Our suspended floor is held up with manufactured I beams rather than hardwood. I beams are made from sustainable plantation pine.
> The floor is particle board which contains a high level of by products from timber processing such as sawdust, shavings and wood chips. By leaving it uncovered we avoided the need for carpet or other floor coverings that can often release harmful chemicals in their manufacturing.
> The interior is made entirely of pine sourced from sustainable plantations. The pine roof beams are grown and milled locally.
> The glass and steel is sourced from local suppliers thus reducing the need for long periods on the back of pollution generating trucks.
> The lighting is exclusively LED and has reduced our energy consumption by approximately 80%
> The roof has no gutters and is designed to allow the water to return all water to the surrounding bushland when it rains.
> Extensive use of glass including floor to ceiling glass on the north face allows the studio to generously receive the sun in winter and avoid the sun in summer.
> By building close to the existing old growth timber we maximise the natural canopy overhead to shelter the studio and we therefore have less need for electric heating and cooling.
> Large glass windows on either side encourage cross flow ventilation.
POMO was engaged to collaborate with FourFold Studio and Vee Design in the revitalisation of the main street in Miles Western Queensland. Our role was to delve in the cultural history of the town and then design a number of bespoke creative elements in the landscape that express the uniqueness of the town.