The Story of The Drive Green Eco Build Office, Green Technology Showroom and Advice Centre
When I first came up with the concept for Drive Green I wanted the business to run from a micro eco building that was not only the businesses offices and showroom, but also a product in itself – a modular micro eco build that can potentially be sited anywhere, can be built to specification, and to have the smallest carbon footprint possible. It was my hope that the building would be an example of an affordable sustainable home that could offer the housing example for the next generation.
I did not imagine that I would realise this dream so early on in the business, however after a chance meeting with artist and designer Mark Wilson of Rockaway Park, shortly before we moved to our new site, I had met someone with the passion and talent to turn this idea into a reality.
The Rockaway Park team of super talented, artists, fabricators and carpenters, led by Mark, then proceeded to build the most fantastic bespoke cabin designed to be both the completely green offices as well as our green technology showroom and advice centre.
“Central to the design was the desire to make the building as green as possible”
Central to the design was the desire to make it as green a building as possible, which was achieved by making the whole building almost exclusively from recycled materials. Built to a highly insulated standard and to incorporate lots of green technologies to make a zero carbon building, from the structure itself to its operation from exclusively self-generated renewable energy.
Not only did Mark and his team manage to make the building from exclusively locally sourced and recycled materials, they also managed to build a cabin of such creative beauty with incredible attention to detail.
“Not only is the end result an incredibly green building that is a great example to others hoping to build similar low carbon structures, it is also looks amazing.”
Built in 2 separate sections on site at Rockaway Park over a period of 5 months.
The building was then delivered 5 miles to the site by local firm Kings. The patience of their amazing driver Paul, meant after 4 hours of careful manoeuvring the 2 building sections were level and sited joined together, ready for the installation of the windows and the final finishing tasks.
Steel framework that makes up the basic chassis and structure was made from recycled industrial fencing.
The timber used for the ceiling and the floor was from old advertising hoardings.
The insulated panels used for the floor and some of the walls were made from old Tesco fridge trucks.
Larger insulated end panels recycled from Bristol airport old terminal.
The main showroom windows were from miss-ordered waste stock from a local window company.
The large office window recycled from another building.
The curved roof timbers were from old recycled fencing.
Curved roof beams are made from recycled scrap steel.
Timber cladding was locally sourced Douglas Fir.
Interior timber cladding is reclaimed packing crate timbers.
Base trims are galvanised steel recycled from Ashton Gate stadium refit.
Flooring was stock damaged waste.
Decorative hand-made nails.
Old telegraph poles for base.
The furniture was also made from an old previously felled Sycamore tree from the Rockaway park site. To make the furniture as green as possible is was then made on site by Neal, from this wood from the site, just 5 miles from where it now resides in our cabin.
An important part of the buildings design is the green roof, which I love, and despite this summer’s drought has grown lovely – I cant wait to see how the green roof evolves over the winter and into next summer.
Plus loads of lovely creative details that make the building special. (Thank you Richard for the lovely old ParCans and doing such a tidy job with the electrics in a suitably industrial style.)
A ‘Big Thank You’ to everyone who helped make this amazing green building happen.
The completely green cabin is an amazing building which is has been such a privilege to be involved in the creation of. Now we are all lucky enough to have such a great environment to work within and a great space for visitors to our green technology showroom. I hope that it provides inspiration to others who are looking to build similar eco structures.
A big thank you to Mark, Wayne, Tommy, Mark G, Chris, Eamon, and Neal from Rockaway Park for all their hard work and friendship and making this building a reality for us – it is amazing and we love it.
Author Details: Richard Norris, founder and Director of ‘Completely Green’ and ‘Drive Green’, family man, and sustainable living enthusiast.