Alain Carle Architect completed the design and development of La Héronnière, a sustainable contemporary home in Wentworth, Quebec. The project is cleverly adapted to a steep slope, and living spaces are located partially below ground. All family bedrooms are located on the second level, with large windows framing the views.

“The owners of the house, a young family with two children, requested a home that supplies itself with energy,” the architect said. “Environmental requirements were non-negotiable: no magnetic field in the inhabited space, no wireless communication protocol, energy self-sufficiency, materials free of volatile organic compounds, recovery of project residues, electric car and so on.”

Linking family activities with the concept of healthy living was creatively achieved. “Meal preparation became one of the rare ‘at home’ activities, bringing movement and sociability,” he said. “To the development of the eating space at the heart of the project, we adjoined a small greenhouse, in continuity with the big bay window on the southwest side.”

Recycled materials (wood doors of a former garage, a removable fence) were employed extensively throughout the sustainable contemporary home. An array of photovoltaic panels ensures excess energy in summer, which can be used during colder months. Despite this ecological approach, the design scheme makes no compromise in style and functionality. [Photography by Adrien Williams]