Victoria and Greg Pryor met on the beach in Montauk, New York, when they were both just kids at 13. After they grew up, fell in love, and had some kids of their own, they decided to build a second house in The Hamptons, where they’d spent those idyllic childhood summers. And as long as they were going to get away from the hustle of Manhattan for a dose of the coast, why not build a green home, in tune with the natural environment?
Dwell reports that the Pryor residence was designed by Victoria’s younger brother, Paul Masi of Bates Masi + Architects to take advantage of passive solar heating and cooling techniques. The home’s double-height living-dining-kitchen space opens up on two sides, allowing the home to be completely open to natural ventilation in the spring and fall, when heating and cooling isn’t an issue. In the summer, an overhang blocks direct sunlight, keeping its heat from entering the house–but when the sun hugs the horizon in the wintertime, sunlight floods the home with natural light and warmth.
The south-facing windows here are further protected from unwanted heat in the summer via two layers of aluminum woven-coil drapes made of recycled scrap metal by Cascade Coil Drapery of Oregon, which also makes fireplace curtains. What heating and cooling for the home is still required is handled by a closed loop geothermal system that takes advantage of the constant 55-degree temperature of the earth.
The home also makes use of insulated concrete panels by Superior Walls (based in the Hudson Valley), which were were delivered directly to the site, assembled with the help of a crane, and bolted together to form the structure’s foundation. These panels — besides saving on resources via prefabrication — are composed of a dense, water-resistant concrete mix that precludes the need for waterproof coatings that can leach into the soil.
Inside, the home makes use of low-VOC paints, finishes and adhesives. It was completed in 2008 after two years of construction.