Located beside a reserve park in Kota Kemuning, Shah Alam, the Nature’s Ark – Twin Villa Residences is a pair of villas designed to cater to a family with elderly occupants within an ecologically self-sustaining environment. Mosquito screens were installed to protect occupants and ensure their comfort.
The Nature’s Ark was inspired by a typology of Malaysia’s traditional home, which was designed to maximise daylight, enhance natural ventilation and reduce solar heat gain. The development is blended into the natural landscaped park to cultivate Green living and cohabitation with nature. The courtyard is surrounded by trees, shrubs, water features, koi pond and ground covers.
ARCHITECTURE AND DESIGN
The two-and-a-half storey villa was designed as two disparate blocks interconnected by bridges, with a glass skylight installed on the rooftop to allow daylight to flow through the habitable spaces. The pathway in the centre of the villa was decorated with landscaped plants, a pond with aquatic plants, an artificial waterfall and a koi pond. These pocket landscapes enhance the design with natural lighting, breezes, water, flora and fauna.
The interconnected circulation between the living spaces and bridges create cross ventilation for natural air flow between the two blocks, while filtering solar heat transmittance and reducing dependency on air-conditioning.
The window hoods were created as cantilevered projections to reduce solar reflectance. Timber louvred trellises shade the windows, porch and terraces on the west and east sides of the villa to reduce internal solar heat gain. Above the glass skylights, auto-shade mesh canopy was installed for the same purpose. The colour theme is based on earth tones to blend in with the surroundings. The primary colour of the walls and roof surfaces is off-white.
MATERIALS AND RESOURCES
The built form was made of locally available concrete, and the masonry structure was roofed over with lightweight GI trusses with pre-insulated flat metal decking.
Recycled timbers were used for cantilevered window hoods, louvres, trellises and sun decks to create a tropical contemporary aesthetic of form follows function. The timbers used for the outdoors were recycled from dilapidated and demolished old buildings.
A stainless steel water tank was installed to collect rainwater from the roof. Harvested rainwater will be piped into taps for watering the garden and plants. Tropical leafy plants were grown in planters and function as sunshading and privacy screens. LED light bulbs are used as the primary light source for energy-saving purposes.
This villa was designed as an ecologically self-sustaining building with minimum maintenance needed. The timber surface is envisaged to age over time to a richer colour tone, while maintaining the aesthetic character of the built form. Trees, shrubs and ground covers were specifically chosen for low maintenance purposes, which only require periodic pruning and discarding of dry leaves. The koi pond and waterfall use a maintenance-free biofilter system, with organic-based materials in segregated tanks of filtered water. The swimming pool is set up with an easy-to-maintain self-contained pump filtration system.
Location: Hillside Manor, Kota Kemuning, Shah Alam, Selangor, Malaysia
Completion Date: 15 May 2015
Site Area: 11,000 square feet (for 2 houses)
Built-up Area: 8,600 square feet (for 2 houses)
Number of Rooms: 5+1 rooms (per house)
Building Height: 10 metres
Client/Owner: Ar Chong Voon Wee
Developer: Ar Chong Voon Wee (Redd Development Office Sdn Bhd)
Architecture Firm: Chong Voon Wee Architect
Principal Architect: Ar Chong Voon Wee
Interior Designer: Redd Design Office Sdn Bhd
Green Building Consultant/Engineer: Redd Design Office Sdn Bhd
Civil & Structural Engineer: Perunding ACE Sdn Bhd
Main Contractor: Megaboilertech Sdn Bhd
Construction Companies: Limuran Sdn Bhd; Megaboilertech Sdn Bhd
Landscaping: Anthosma Landscape Sdn Bhd
Images/Photos: Midas Touch