Homerton College Cambridge Porters’ Lodge

Skelly & Couch are part of a team led by Alison Brooks Architects which has won a two-stage design competition for the new net zero carbon timber-framed Porters' Lodge and expansion of the college library.

Skelly & Couch are designing a range of exemplary environmental features for the three-storey pavilion, including passive measures reducing energy demand at source:

• main structural timber elements with their inherent sequestered carbon will more than offset both regulated carbon emissions, produced from building services installations, and unregulated emissions produced from the day-to-day use of the building

• excellent daylighting, in general reading areas and circulation, so artificial lighting will not be required during the day in rooms with windows

• utilising window openings for natural ventilation in summer wherever possible; the central core will be used to generate a pressure differential and drive air flow through the building

• passive solar heating to areas exposed to the low winter sun 

• use of the surrounding gardens to create a local micro-climate with evaporative cooling.

Secondly, the reduced energy demands of the building will be serviced as efficiently as possible; and thirdly, heat and power delivery will be optimised by the inclusion of renewable technology where appropriate. For example:

• renewable power will be generated from a roof-mounted PV array which will part power heat pumps.