New Build: Letterkenny

This new family home, set in rolling countryside, marries modern low-energy construction techniques with a familiar aesthetic that, on first appearances, is distinctively of rural Ireland. But look a little closer and it reveals materials and details that celebrate the craft of the builder, local tradesmen and the architect.

  • Date:¬†21/03/19
  • Client:¬†Galbraith Construction
  • Project Type: New Build

About this home

The house is situated on a half-acre rectangular site and benefits from a southwest orientation and expansive countryside views. Nearby, old stone farm buildings and gable-ended bungalows appear set into the landscape and are typically of simple rectangular form.

The new house is a nod to its surrounding architecture, with particular attention taken to simplify the gables with seamless edges. Two modest materials wrap the house; white render and concrete tiles, which are separated by a thin edge of corten metal. This maintenance-free metal naturally forms a thin rust coating and has been expertly folded and welded to form window sills, entry canopies and soffits.

Internally, the layout maximises direct sunlight into an open-plan double-height living area. Solar gains are further exploited by a black exposed-aggregate polished concrete floor throughout the ground floor and extending through floor to ceiling glass to form the south-facing patio. This absorbs heat from the sun providing significant thermal gains and also folding up to form seating, steps and the double-sided hearth.

The home achieves an A2 Building Energy Rating, attained by a highly insulated and air-tight envelope, achieving an airtight rating of 1.9m3/h/m2A. An air to water heat pump provides underfloor heating throughout while a mechanical ventilation and heat recovery system ensures a constant supply of fresh air.

Want to know more about this fantastic house and its special features? Watch this video to hear from the home’s designer and resident, along with our very own, Bert.