Solar-Rib® on Waiheke Island

An elegant profile integrating well into the Island Landscape

Having lived on Waiheke Island for more than 20 years, architectural designer Claudia Lapp is familiar with it’s often challenging topography.

But for this Oneroa site the challenge was more in getting the most out of a home that would have a west-facing orientation to capture the sea views, and it was through her and fellow architectural designer Ole Toft’s work on the island that the owners of this site came to them with a specific brief for their home.

“The clients were really clear about what they wanted to achieve,” Ole says, also for Waiheke it was “a fairly flat site but close to the edge of a steep embankment. The access was good, so site related issues were pretty straightforward”.

Their clients wanted a home of around 200sq m with the majority of the living spaces and bedrooms to face the western sea view, and for the home to have high sloping ceilings, clean and contemporary living spaces, and provision for artwork to be displayed.

An expressive roofing profile was part of the brief, as was contemporary building materials with a selection of cladding surfaces. The clients wanted an easy flow between the interior and the deck areas facing the sea, accessed by all bedrooms, as well as covered porch areas on the east and west elevations to create morning and afternoon outdoor spaces. An outdoor patio off the dining space was to be protected from prevailing southwest wind to provide an alternative entertainment area as well as access to the barbecue and vegetable and herb planters.

Passive solar features including the use of thermal masses were a key element as were efficient space and water heating systems. Two heat pumps service the under-floor heating and the hot water system.

Claudia says, “With a need to capture the sea views on the western elevation while optimizing the passive solar aspects, a gullwing roof design provided the most desirable solution.”

She says Dimond Roofing’s Solar-Rib® was chosen to accentuate the roofline with its “attractive roofing profile offering a strong linear pattern.”

Solar-Rib® can be installed with Photo - Voltaic Laminate (PVL) solar panel technology, which then enables electric power generation. As a stand-alone profile, it also offers elegant looks. Solar- Rib® can be installed initially without the PVL if required, with laminate able to be added onto the profile later.

Claudia adds, “This four- bedroom home features a spacious kitchen/dining/ living area oriented towards the sea views but also a private patio area protected from the prevailing south-westerly winds, receiving the morning sun. Covered porches above the patio and the deck facing the views provide shelter for outdoor living year-round.

“A high roofed entry hall, separating the living area and the bedroom wing opens up to the view, as do all the bedrooms and the rumpus room.” Ole says the house has a strong, almost commercial presence and one of the most noticeable features is the glazed gallery that runs along the eastern side of the home adjacent the main entry.

“All bedrooms and the rumpus room feature clerestory windows with eaves over, to allow the morning and midday sun to enter as desired,” says

Claudia. “The concrete slab and concrete block walls serve as a thermal heat store providing consistent ambient temperature. A gas fireplace features in the living room and can be used during the colder months. Together with the thermal insulation, which exceeds NZ Building Code requirements, and the use of low toxicity building materials, an even temperature and healthy living environment were achieved.”


Solar-Rib® can be installed with Photo-Votaic Laminate (PVL) Solar Panel technology which then enables electric power generation. An attractive profile offering elegant looks, Solar-Rib® can be installed without the PVL, with the laminate being added onto the profile later if desired.


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