Topanga climate-neutral concept-home  

The fundamental idea is to create a home with as little impact on nature as possible by making use of recycled materials and save water and power by usingmodern alternatives to traditional water and power handling

Pics of the land.


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From east, left side


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from north, front



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from west, right side

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from top of hill

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lot is triangular up the hill front 80x 100 left side x 128 right side (ft)

Foundation and construction.

The basic construction material for the project is recycled shipping containers. The containers are strong and well suitable for modular construction. Itwithstands a wildfire. The outside will be covered with stuck that will make a beautiful Mediterranean looking exterior, takes off the heat in case of wildfire and provide insulation during hot days.

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In order to make as little impact on the site, the home should be raised on pillars,

thereby a hydrodiversion wall can be avoided. With the pillars high enough therewill be plenty of room for ventilation of the biogradable restroom via chimney

through the roof, a tank to store the greywater and to keep a normal sized carunderneath, thereby no need for a garage.



4x20 ft cont

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weight 18000 lbs


2x 20 ft cont + 1x 40ft high cont


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weight 18000 lbs1x 20 ft cont 1x 40ft cont

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weight 135000 lbs

(40 ft high tare 9150 lbs , max gross 67200 lbs20 ft tare 4585 lbs max gross 52910 lbs)

some inspiration:

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Water, composting and power production.


To make as little impact as possible on the nature one should avoid to constructa general septic tank. Water from shower and washroom will be kept in tank forirrigation. Water from kitchen will be trasnferred to minimal septic tank. .(Acc tobill 1258 California has a adapted a new graywater policy as of jan 1 2009. b)

Notwithstanding Chapter 22 (commencing with Section 14875) of Division 7 ofthe Water Code, at the next triennial  building standards rulemaking cycle that commences on or afterJanuary 1, 2009, the department shall adopt and submit for approvalpursuant to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 18935) of Part


2.5 building standards for the construction, installation, and...) Composting through a three chamber method takes place underneath the house,  ventilation through a chimney. By making use of solar energy, in house powerproduction will replace or supplement the electrical bill. Proposed greenalternatives to traditional ones:



1/ composting toilet (for lessening spill and production of fertile soils)

2/ closed system for resuage of water (“grey water”) for irrigation.

3/ solar panels on walls and roof for power

5/ small water tank on the roof to lessen water outtake

6/ food storage and refrigeration by in house power production or backup gas alt.

7/ stove powered by gas and or in house powerproduction.

The short end of the rectangle will make the kitchen and restroom area, on the roof a watertank is placed, creating a natural pressure and no need for a water pump,. A restroom with a shower and a sink, separate room for toilet, a kitchenette opens towards the living room/work area and a bedroom next to the entrance at the other short end of the home.

Underneath the kitchen, restroom area will be applied from underneath a compartment for composting and a tank for gray water, later transported in a closed system up the hillside where it is used for irrigation of the hill. Scrap wood painted white, for the inside, will make irregular walls perfect for a recording studio, it will provide sufficient insulation and ventilation between the steel and the wood not to create any condense. Recycled wood will also be used to divide the bedrooms in the hallway, bedroom has skylight. The living room/work area will have an old cast-iron stove for heat; a chimney goes up  through the roof. Air conditioning is not necessary. Water heating, a small heater that can be run off the in house power production or alternatively a small propane gas heater will be kept in the kitchenette, water will be divided to make it available in the shower/wash room.

Jon Rekdal