Eco Homes

Building a house is a very important decision, so it is essential to analyze and understand very well the quality of our homes and the materials that compose it.

  • Anti-seismic structures
  • Insulation in black cork agglomerate
  • Natural and environmentally friendly materials
  • Speed of construction

The anti-seismic structures created by Green Heritage are inspired by the famous timbered frames, extremely resistant buildings constructed with wooden structures for many centuries in France, Switzerland and Germany, particularly in regions with hight risk of seismic activity. Like Portugal.

After the 1755 earthquake that destroyed Lisbon, these structures inspired the military engineers (Manuel da Maia, Eugénio dos Santos and Carlos Mardel) – charged by the Marquis of Pombal to rebuild the city – in the definition of the famous Pombal cage.

Many of these buildings are still in good condition, as well as many other of historic in Guimarães city, for example, where we find buildings over 300 years old built with robust structures in wood. In France, Switzerland and Germany there are thousands of timbered houses with over 300, 400 and 500 years old, still inhabited and in perfect condition.

There are other very interesting historical examples of application of this remarkable building system in other parts of the world that is worth admiring.

Haiti, late 19th century. In 1895 three young Haitian architects headed to Paris to study architecture and returned to Haiti with the idea of creating a style inspired by the houses of the French Riviera and timbered engineering. Thus were born the iconic Gingerbread houses. In 2010 an earthquake on the scale 7 destroyed 170,000 Haitian buildings, the vast majority in reinforced concrete. Practically all Gingerbread houses resisted, proving the extraordinary resistance of this type of construction. What better guarantee can we have, in addition to these examples of robustness and durability?

The current technology has opened us other possibilities. While timbered structures were performed manually by dozens of workers in thousands of hours, today we use sophisticated technology to cut millimeter wooden beams in glued laminated wood, then packaged and sent directly to the works, which are quickly mounted with special ironworks carbon steel. So, we put together a complex structure in a few hours. This speed allows us to achieve affordable prices, given that we can build a house in much less time than a house in masonry.

 260 m2 project held in Redondo (Alentejo) in 2015. The customer has contracted us to implement our ecological method of construction to the existing project.

Production designs with their construction plans were carried out.

The house took 40 m3 of structural laminated wood, about 110 m3 of black agglomerated cork cut to size, and several tons of clay and local stone for the interior walls. The interiors were plastered with clay and the outer with special mortar for plastering cork. The ceilings were made with bricks of Santa Catarina (Algarve), very tipical of the region and very efficient for hot Summers.

On 23 July August 2016, were 41 ° C outside, and 23.4ºC inside the house. No air conditioning!

Cork Insulation

Another of the key features of our homes is the insulation in black chipboard expanded cork, an extraordinary thermal, ecological, acoustic and vibration insulation, used by NASA in space ships.

This is one of the main features of our homes and never spared this isolation of black agglomerated cork, because it will guarantee comfort and energy savings for your entire life, your children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Besides all this, the black cork is incorruptible, because the cork never rot or lose their insulating qualities.

Luxury Finishes

With a sturdy structure and perfect insulation, then we move to the finishings.

A house plastered with clay gives a unique sense of pleasure and comfort.

Clay is used for thousands of years in the construction and it is estimated that, globally, more than 50% of the buildings are made of clay. In Green Heritage we use the clays both partitions as some interior plasters. Its characteristics as a natural moisture regulator make this almost indispensable materials in some situations in sustainable and ecological construction. We also use natural paintings on clay, with beautiful natural shades.

The result of a wall plastered in the same clay is something special. Natural hues only found in clays and capabilities in design that bring magic to the interior of a house.

Our clays comes from various regions in Portugal, Spain and Germany.

Natural hydraulic lime.

We do not use cement in our homes (except for foundations), but the natural hydraulic lime. This 100% natural lime is free of additions, good elasticity and high permeability to water vapor. The walls are breathing, just like our skin. Sometimes they ask us if the lime is more resistant than cement. Well … just see many Roman buildings, with more than 2,000 years. The “cement” you see there it is… lime. This answers the question.

The marmorino is a fine plaster finish used in palaces and became very popular in the Renaissance, especially in Venice. It is composed of natural lime, marble fine powder and natural binders.

We use Italian marmorinos 100% natural without any artificial additives. While many providers use chemicals to preserve or prevent the mold storage to retain the mass marmorino, our marmorinos as binders are casein, shellac, or vegetable starch, and natural bio 100%.

These plasters thin (2 to 3 millimeters), which can be applied to the exterior and the interior, maintain the breathability of the walls, thus avoiding accumulation of moisture or fungal growth foci. Aesthetically, they are wonderful. You can use various finishes combinations, using special techniques such as dilavato, intonachino lava marmorino, travetino or tadelakt. is not so expensive as you might think, not obviously need to apply everywhere, but these are details that will give your home a personality that will make all your family proud and feel good. Our designers partners interior, support you will find the best solutions.

Here you can see a detail of application marmorino :

Model wooden structural anti seismic system, known as "Pombaline cage." Instituto Superior Técnico, Lisbon.

Colombage houses, made with wood structures, with over 400 years old and in perfect condition.

The iconic Gingerbread houses withstood an earthquake that struck Haiti in 2010.

The cork oak, which produces the black cork agglomerate, was officially established in 2011 as the National Tree of Portugal.

Marmorino Venetian plaster is a that can be used on the walls of our homes. Date to Roman times but became popular 500 years ago in the Renaissance in Venice.

Sustainable House in Idanha a Nova. Green Heritage 2015

Artwork example of a wall plastered with clay. Small details like this can turn a house into a very special place.

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