Architect: Mike Schroeder of the Development Action Group, 2003
The low two-storey Green Building, in Cape Town's Westlake Business Park, is built from recycled, local concrete brick and sustainably harvested wood, and boasts a passive thermal design that eliminates the need for air conditioning. If needed, the building can be flushed with cool night air through two chimney ducts linked to concrete pipes running underneath the ground floor. Roof-mounted photovoltaic (solar cell) panels turn sunlight into electricity, while a separate solar power system heats water for kitchens and bathrooms - including showers for those who cycle to work. Drainage systems channel household 'grey' wastewater and rainfall into surrounding fruit and vegetable gardens.
photo: Mike Schroeder, Cape Town
Another innovative green building - the Reichstag in Berlin - is featured in the 7 City Wonders on page 22.