B House in Shimasaki by
Anderson Anderson Architecture

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Despite being surrounded by electricity pylons, this hillside cabin in Japan by San Francisco firm Anderson Anderson Architecture generates all its own energy and heating using photovoltaic panels and a ground-sourced heat pump (+ slideshow).

B House by Anderson and Anderson

Named B-House, the single-storey building is positioned on a slope overlooking Kumamoto, so Anderson Anderson added a wall of glazing to the rear facade that gives residents a view out across the city from the living room, study and bedroom.

B House by Anderson and Anderson

The house was built on a tight budget and sustainability was key to the design. "The extremely modest budget required a close collaboration of the architects and builder to achieve a high quality, off-site fabricated timber frame construction meeting high sustainability standards," explain the architects.

B House by Anderson and Anderson

The edge of the roof is tilted southwards to maximise sunlight to the photovoltaic panels, while integrated channels collect rainwater so that it can be reused.

B House by Anderson and Anderson

There is no air conditioning, so when the temperature increases residents can slide open the glazed north-facing walls.

B House by Anderson and Anderson

There are only clerestory windows on the southern facade, which allow hot air to escape and prevent the unnecessary heat gain that would occur with larger windows.

B House by Anderson and Anderson

The whole house sits on a thick concrete base, while the walls and roof were constructed using locally sourced timber.

B House by Anderson and Anderson

The house was completed in 2009, but hasn’t been widely published.

B House by Anderson and Anderson

Other sustainable houses we've featured include a pavilion-like house in Germany that generates all its own power, as well as a concept for a house that is entirely self-sufficient.

B House by Anderson and Anderson

See more stories about houses in Japan, including a concrete residence with barely any windows.

Photography is by Chris Bush.

B House by Anderson and Anderson

Above: floor plan - click to see larger image

B House by Anderson and Anderson

Above: section - click to see larger image

B House by Anderson and Anderson

Above: south elevation - click to see larger image

B House by Anderson and Anderson

Above: west and east elevations - click to see larger image

B House by Anderson and Anderson

Above: north elevation - click to see larger image