Eco-eye for Mean Green House Designs

November 15, 2016 at 12:13 PM

Year 9 College student, Chris Dirks, has outdone himself for the second year, by winning Genesis Energy’s SchoolGen Mean Green House competition.  

Chris won the Secondary School section of the nationwide contest, which tasked students to research, design and then build a scale model of an energy-efficient house, to deal with the energy-based sustainability issues of the present and future.

Chris took inspiration from the Auckland housing market, on how we need a lot of simple, easy to build and functional homes to help the ever-growing population. He decided on a smaller, compact house that is open plan, has indoor/outdoor flow and is ultimately cost-effective.

In his design this year, there was an added difference – Waffle Boxes! These sustainable boxes use less cement, less wood and more recycling of steel forms. It is an industrial building system, that was invented in the Philippines to withstand tsunamis and earthquakes.

The house has solar panels to harness renewable and sustainable energy. Rain water is collected from the flat surfaces and directed into a large storage tank underground. Recognising the environmental benefits of public transport, there is no garage for a car, replaced by space for bicycles.  There is double glazing on most of the windows to reduce heat loss.

For his efforts, Chris won a class set of Edison v2 robots from Mindkits for students to investigate coding and STEM. He also received his own Edison Robot.

Watch the video of his creation here: 


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