Arbau Studio: Ghaus, a wooden house in Spresiano (TV)

A low-budget, energy-efficient prefabricated house in the countryside just outside Treviso. Text Marta Baretti. Photo Francesco Castagna

The Ghaus is a prefabricated house located in an agricultural area just outside Treviso. It has been built with the X-Lam technology, which involves the use of load-bearing wooden panels. The wood is the main feature of the interior space, where the panels have been left exposed, as well as of the exterior facades, which have been faced with larch planks. This is a low-budget, energy-efficient house, making full use of the expressive possibilities of wood - it does not hide the technology used in its construction. The house has the north-south orientation of other rural houses, the best aspect given the changes in the weather in the area. The two main facades take this into account: on the south side there are large apertures combined with a sunblind system, allowing it to be opened up depending on the level of light, while the north side is more closed and has smaller apertures. The roof has been constructed from two layers of metal sheeting. It does not protrude uniformly over the outer edge of the building: there is minimal overhang on the north side, while on the south side there is a gradual projection to protect the house from the sun. The pitch of the roof has allowed the creation of a volumetric spatial structure, especially on the first floor. The house is part of the landscape: light, fog and rain enter a domestic space which has been extended outwards and which at night lights up the countryside. This is a modern house that revives the clear formal rigour of local house styles and building traditions.Marta Baretti

Ghaus, prefabricated wooden house, Spresiano (Treviso)
Architect: Arbau Studio (Marta Baretti e Sara Carbonera)
Design team: Francesca Toppazzini, Monica Martini
Manufacturing firm: Service Legno
Management of operations: Arbau
Construction phase: 2007-2008

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