We are living in a moment of huge change, where society as we know it may never be the same. Many are predicting a very different world post Covid 19, history serves us as a reminder that global events can be a catalyst for a better future.
With most of us staying at home we have all learnt the value of space. Our homes are under huge pressure and not designed for our ‘new normal’ of living, working and home schooling. It’s with this change you realise how well or how badly your home layout is working for you and your family.
With these changes it has never been a more opportune moment to design and future proof your home. We founded oao architects on the simple belief in building a better future, in which we are closer to nature and more sustainable. Instead of moving, we should be maximising and renovating our current spaces. At oao we have seen a vast increase in collaborators wanting to improve their homes with environmentally responsible extensions and renovations.
Our Studio has been carrying out research and development into what we call the ‘Alchemy of Fabrication’. This is series of renewable, natural building materials constructed by using sophisticated timber-based technologies. This method helps to reduce the embodied carbon of construction, embodied carbon is the amount of carbon created by any material during its manufacturing process. The simple fact is ‘as trees grow, they consume and store great amounts of carbon’. Responsible timber harvesting allows a consistent and calculated renewal of trees for timber production, ensuring a consistent storage of carbon and supply of renewable timber.
We pioneered some of these technologies on our recent project Noor House: a 1970s three storey townhouse in Ealing, London. The house no longer worked for our collaborators lifestyle. We reconfigured their house, adding a bespoke sunken lounge to the rear connected to the garden and kitchen. The extension used an innovative hybrid timber structure topped with a blossoming green roof. Large pivoting glazed doors allowed direct access to the re-landscaped garden terrace. ‘Noor’ in Arabic means light, this was important to our collaborators who wanted a lighting installation that felt like ‘sitting beneath the stars’. We created a highly sculptural faceted ceiling which is perforated to allow an ambient lantern effect to illuminate each evening.
Even in an increasingly challenging world we see a new optimism emerging in architecture. With new timber-based technologies we can build a better, cleaner future. Our belief in creating progressive design for the future is only possible with likeminded collaborators, lets us help you build a better future,
By Olli Andrew
Olli Andrew is an award-winning architect and owner of oao architects, he founded the studio in 2018.
Oao is a small adventurous practice creating progressive design that evolves for our future. The studio has now opened a new outpost in Berkhamsted Hertfordshire. Oao are a future orientated design studio creating one of houses, extensions, renovations, community projects, installations and shop fit outs.
Website – www.oao.design
Instagtam – @oao_architects
Email – firstname.lastname@example.org