Stiebel Eltron and Joost Bakker — Zero Waste Greenhouse 5.0

Perched by the bank of the Yarra, a recyclable steel frame overflows with corrugated iron, 44-gallon drums, garden vines and solar panels. Fed Square's River Terrace hosts the culmination of a 12-year quest for the next level of zero waste off-grid sustainable living — Joost Bakker's Greenhouse.

Greenhouse has seen many forms, from pop-up restaurant to complete urban farmhouse. Always a beacon of sustainable practice in the hospitality industry, this latest incarnation will see chefs Matt Stone and Jo Barret inhabit this self-sustaining micro-ecosystem for six months. The celebrity chefs aim to cook over 300 recipes, host educational dinners and push the possibilities for holistic food, house and zero waste living.

Imagine changing the world's biggest problems by changing the way that we live.
— Joost Bakker

Stiebel Eltron is proud to be a part of the sustainable systems powering this project. Stiebel Eltron systems for heating, cooling, hot water, air filtration and heat recovery set the background for aquaponic tanks (freshwater mussels, fish and prawns), a mycelial (mushroom) wall, the central staircase greenhouse (made from ethically sourced timber), charcoal filtered water tanks and even a biogas reactor. Coupled with deeply integrated passive house principles, Stiebel Eltron know-how sits alongside and connects with the living ecosystem of Greenhouse.

Working Efficiency to Design Away Waste
In this balance of food production, designed living systems and waste recuperation, Stiebel Eltron provides a powerful, multi-use core for the 87m3 space. The HSBC combi tank inside is space-conscious (the size of a single door fridge) and does the heavy lifting of heating, cooling and hot water. A 20kW solar panel array drives the entire completely-off-grid system via a Fronius inverter and Selectronic battery, with a STIEBEL ELTRON WPL 17 heat pump here working away quietly outside.

This highly efficient combination heat pump system means that the often at a premium solar panel roof space can be harnessed for extra food production. The double-layered rooftop garden is a major design feature of the house, integrated into the buildings engineering and form the building's foundation — high energy efficiencies make this possible. All food production and living system work has been done with complete care for liveability in the space. Hydronic heating and cooling run underfoot, working in tandem with uniquely grounded concrete tiling to ensure living systems don't mean anything less than maximum comfort.

The passively oriented, airtight design with double glazed windows means it will need little mechanical heating and cooling to keep the home comfortable.
— Sam Frost, Stiebel Eltron

Heat recovery ventilation supports the innovative double-glazed windows (only steel and glass) and Durra (compressed straw) panel outer to maintaining a steady and equally comfortable temperature in the space. High-performance filters supply a steady stream of top-quality air — filtering the highly trafficked air of Fed Square, a necessary fixture by the banks of the Yarra in the age of bushfires, pollution and pandemic.

Inspired Living, Zero Waste, Stiebel Eltron Powered
Greenhouse is so much more than 'a house that grows its own food' — it is a voyage into what innovation, quality systems and a little bit of inspired thinking can do. Stiebel Eltron is excited to be a part of this future-forward project right in the heart of Melbourne.


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