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Melbourne VIC



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Construction is now complete on this exciting new house project.

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Setting a new benchmark for sustainable living & luxury in the city

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Construction is near complete on this exciting project for JCU - we are working as Architects in Association with KIRK and i4 Architecture

Modern Tropical Architecture

Fitting the Building to the Environment with Modern Tropical Architecture

Buildings are changing, and the aim is no longer to dominate or subdue nature and the surrounding space but to harmonise with it. Modern tropical architecture engenders this sustainable approach best in tropical and subtropical climates. Tropical climate architecture design has a few hallmark features that tie in with Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD) to create a conscious approach to architecture.

Basic Tenants of Tropical Building Design

Tropical contemporary architecture has some basic tenants that define it against other architecture styles. These all aim to harmonise with nature and use it advantageously. Innovation is the vehicle for this, and our team at Charles Wright Architects does continuous research and development seeking precise solutions to your requirements and site conditions. All components of the house are purposefully located instead of being slaves to symmetry. A home should evoke joy and reverence while keeping you comfortable.

  • The integration of light through various features of the house such as water, exterior courtyards, open floor plans and white reflective surfaces helps create seamless space. It cuts down on your lighting bill while breathing life into a space.

  • Seamless space refers to the blurred boundaries between indoor and outdoor spaces, allowing one to flow into the other. This space calls to mind traditional tropical architecture like the Polynesian fale without walls, where the traditional blends into the modern.

  • Keep things simple and natural. Tropical contemporary architecture differs from the traditional by incorporating simple, clean lines. The fusion of the traditional with the modern extends to material choices. The combination of evocative, sustainable local materials with metal, stucco, glass and dark woods creates a fused juxtaposition.

  • Shade. Tropical climates are hot and prone to heavy rainy seasons. Shade in the form of extra-wide eaves, verandas, deep porches, and covered walks helps dampen the heat and keeps you dry during the rainy season. We also 'painted with shadow' in the (W)RIGHT House, adding a new dimension.

  • Airflow is a prime consideration. Strategically placed windows, large sliding doors and breezeways are tools to facilitate air circulation. Having naturally optimised ventilation reduces or even eliminates the need for air conditioning. Features such as cascading waterfalls used in The Edge House provide evaporative cooling in the dry months that add to the ventilation effect.

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The Environmental Alignment of Tropical Climate Architecture Design

The environment can’t be left out of the equation when designing a building. The Ecologically Sustainable Development (ESD) concept referred to in many Australian environmental laws is defined as, “Development that uses, conserves and enhances the community’s resources so that ecological processes, on which life depends, are maintained and the total quality of life, now and in the future, can be increased.” Tropical design architecture naturally lends itself to this.

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  • The carbon footprint is significantly reduced by the design of tropical architecture. The integration of light and ventilation into the design reduces your electric bill. The use of local materials stimulates the local economy and reduces the carbon footprint.

  • Integrating technology into modern tropical architecture is part of the evolution of tropical building design and building design in general. Carbon neutral houses such as Stamp House use solar panels and low energy design to safeguard the area's future.

  • Interference and impact to the building site are carefully planned out to cause minimal damage or even enhance the environment like Stamp house with the engineered water eco-system on which the home sits.

Charles Wright Architects: Innovative and Bold

Tropical design architecture should be left to professionals. Charles Wright Architects was established in 2004 and has numerous awards for our transcendent buildings. We follow a rigorous approach to deliver above and beyond expectations.


Please don't hesitate to contact us and discuss your requirements and ideas.

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