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Home > Example Homes > Whareuku (Earth House)

Whareuku (Earth House)

Home Details

Building area
90 m2 m2
Year built
2 bedroom(s), 1 bathroom(s)
The whareuku, or earth house, is built on Maori land in Rotoiti as part of research from the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Auckland to develop a low-cost rammed earth housing solution that is accessible and provides an adequate standard of living.

The house is built on a concrete foundation with a standard timber roof clad with corrugated iron sheets. The walls are constructed out of an earth mix consisting of over 90% soil, flax-fibres and 8% cement. From past tests conducted at the University of Auckland, the rammed earth material has been found to be strong enough for single storey dwellings in regions with high seismic demands.

The fit-out of the whareuku includes solar panel water heating, a composting worm farm, and a house designed around optimising the use of thermal mass.

It was designed in accordance with the principle of kaitiakitanga, or the guardianship of natural resources.

The family moved into this house in late 2008.

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