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  • Ojo del Sol

    Ojo del Sol

    • Ojo del Sol
      Ojo del Sol is located in California
      Ojo del Sol
      Location in California
      Alternative names
      • The Tsui House
      • The Fish House
      • Tai Yang Yen
      Etymology Ojo del Sol is Spanish for Eye of the Sun
      General information
      Type Single family dwelling
      Architectural style Biomimetic architecture
      Address 2747 Mathews Street, Berkeley, California
      Country USA
      Coordinates 37°51′22″N 122°17′8″W / 37.85611°N 122.28556°W / 37.85611; -122.28556
      Construction started 1993
      Completed 1995
      Cost US$250,000
      Owner Florence Tsui
      Technical details
      Material
      Floor area 2,200 square feet (200 m2)
      Design and construction
      Architect Eugene Tsui
      Website
      http://www.tdrinc.com/tsuihs.html
      Ojo del Sol is located in Oakland, California
      Ojo del Sol
      Location in Berkeley, California

      Ojo del Sol, also called The Fish House by local residents, is a home designed in 1993 by architect Eugene Tsui. The building was constructed between 1994 and 1995 in a residential neighborhood of Berkeley California. The home’s name "Ojo Del Sol", Spanish for "Eye of the Sun", originates from the fifteen foot diameter eye-like window that faces south. According to the architect, the structure is based upon the world's most indestructible living creature, the Tardigrade.

      The building's design is centered around durability, ecology, and sustainability. The building is said to draw upon the physiology of the tardigrade, a creature known for its durability, for its structural strength. In addition, the walls are angled inward at 4 degrees to "create a compressive structure with a low center of gravity further aiding in resistance to lateral turnover forces produced by strong earthquakes." A variety of both standard and non-standard building materials were used including: Concrete, Insulating concrete forms, hardwall (a type of gypsum plaster) structural plaster, Stucco, Non-toxic waterproofing, acrylic, marine fiberglass, douglas fir, recycled wood, and birch veneer plywood.

      The house is designed to maintain a comfortable temperature with little power from the grid. "Water in the black tubes is heated by the sun throughout the day. At night the stored heat is radiated back into the interior of the house walls and provides radiant wall heat." For cooling, the house is set 1.5 meters into the ground, eliminating the need for air conditioning.

      The 2,200 square feet (200 m2) home was built in 1994-1995 for a cost of US$250,000 (equivalent to $392,900 in 2016).

      The building style is Nature Inspired Architecture or Biomimetic architecture. Biomimetic elements include:



      • The Tsui House
      • The Fish House
      • Tai Yang Yen
      • The overall draws from the tardigrade, the four-bedroom, two-story Tsui House is elliptical in shape and has parabolic arches.
      • The concrete forms create a concrete lattice structure which mimics the skeleton of the Cholla cactus.
      • The solar-heating system is based on the bone and vein structure of two dinosaurs, the Dimetrodon and the Stegosaurus.
      • The dimpled exterior surface enhances the aerodynamic efficiency by relieving wind friction like fish scales.
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