Construction World December 2017

the house are ideal for leisure time spent in the rustic outdoors, but with the luxury of a swimming pool easily accessible by well- crafted decking underfoot. Railings were made using stainless steel crimps on tensioners fixed to the end posts, a system that gives the client the best possible view through the railings. While the project offered up its own unique set of challenges to the Eco Log Homes team, including no on-site accommodation, limited accessibility and especially rugged terrain, the beauty of the Boschhoek Mountain Estate more than made up for this; and the many benefits of timber frame construction, most notably in this case, its lightweight properties, answered well to site challenges. With its magnificent vistas, abundant wildlife and distinct aromas rising from the veld, House du Preez stands proud – and yet humbly – an ode to the landscape upon which it sits and very much a part of it. PROJECT INFORMATION • Company entering: Eco Log Homes • Client: Errol and Rachel du Preez • Contract value: R2-million • Start date: July 2015 • End date: April 2016 • Main contractor: Eco Log Homes • Architect: Eugene Barnard Architects • Consulting engineer: Hull Consulting Engineers


(Also entered Category D)

Eco Log Homes’ House du Preez is located in the pristine Boschhoek Mountain Estate in Nylstroom. The project is an impressive three- bedroom, 400 m 2 bushveld family holiday home, which was built using timber frame and log profile cladding, not only for a gentle environmental footprint, but to pay aesthetic homage to the earthy landscape it calls home.

House du Preez was designed by Eugene Barnard Architects with engineering input from Hull Consulting Engineers and represents a sophisticated, yet robust answer to a client brief that called for a rustic, yet luxurious off-grid home that would not only reflect its surroundings, but be respectful of and sensitive to its environment. Timber, as a construction material that beautifully straddles the juncture between ancient and high tech building methodologies, checked all the boxes of the environmentally-focused client brief. Eco Log Homes recognises that homeowners and businesses are becoming increasingly more concerned about the environment and insist on being educated about the origins and lifecycle of the things they buy. All timber used by Eco Log Homes is from commercially run plantations, not natural forests. The timber it sources for its projects is only from responsibly managed FSC certified plantations and, being under excellent management to global standards, are considered a sustainable resource. House du Preez’s walls were built of timber frame according to SANS (South African National Standards) 10082, using 38 mm x 114 mm S5 strength graded structural timber treated with CCA. All wall structures were sheathed with 8 mm-thick oriented strand board for structural bracing integrity. High quality supports, anchors and tie- downs were used and all fasteners, bolts,

rods, screws and nails were electroplated to SABS standards. The timber frame was cladded with 50 mm-thick tongue-and-groove log profile cladding, which had been treated to Hazard Class 3 per regulations. All of the structural timber used, except the posts which were retreated from H4 to the required H5 due to sourcing challenges, was treated to H3. Furthermore, the exterior log profile was stained to blend in with the natural environment. Outlet pipes were installed on the boxed flat roof section of the house and rusted chains where hung from these to create a natural water feature when it rains. No other gutters or down pipes were installed. A charcoal grey corrugated iron roof was specifically selected to complement the house and blend in with the environment,

and the specially rounded corrugated iron towers, housing the staircase and outdoor showers, were primed and painted with a colour specifically matched with the Chromadek roof. Maculata of the

Eucalyptus family was used for the flooring, skirting and even kick- boards in the kitchen.

Decking around the pool was extensive and formed an important part of the client brief. Both the surrounds and

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