A Bridge to Water Savings Bridge House - Los Angeles, California
Dan Brunn, AIA, Principal of Dan Brunn Architecture, had to meet the mandatory water efficiency requirements of the California Green Code in his own minimalist-design home. He chose Geberit in-wall toilet systems for their water-saving flush volume and space-saving design.
Dan Brunn of Dan Brunn Architecture brought a new kind of ecological challenge to Hancock Park, a historic residential neighborhood in Los Angeles. His 4,500-square-foot home, “Bridge House”, stretches 200 feet across a 15,000-square-foot lot, straddling a stream that gives the home its name. The home’s design exemplifies Brunn’s signature minimalist aesthetic: a provocative spatial choreography that harmonizes light and volume.
“We chose building materials, finishes and systems that have, for example, advanced ecological properties, a technically advanced building system that creates thermal resistance, an integrated shell design that offers extreme energy efficiency, recyclable steel, low-E glass, photovoltaic cells, and a BONE Structure steel building system that is so precise there is no waste left on the site.
“When it came to choosing toilets, which account for one of the highest usages of water, we had to go with the most water-efficient system for our purposes and to meet CALGreen,” says Brunn. CALGreen®, the California Green Code, was California’s first green building code and the nation’s first state-mandated green building code for new residential projects as well as additions or alterations. The code specifies maximum flow rates for all plumbing fixtures, including 1.28 GPF water closets.
“Building construction technology is so far behind and we really haven’t progressed,” says Brunn, “so we are excited by maximum water savings and minimal construction waste that meet CALGreen codes.”
Brunn become familiar with Geberit in-wall systems while traveling in Europe and began to include them in many of his projects. Adding them to the bathrooms in his own home was a natural next step.
“I am a proponent of minimalist design where function is purposeful and aesthetics become inherent, even in the design of my own home, as evidenced by choosing water-saving Geberit tank-in-wall systems with Sigma80 actuators in my four bathrooms.” – Dan Brunn, AIA
Bridge House is open to architectural and educational tours that describe the sustainable elements of the structure, including the building materials used, the use of renewable energy, and construction waste management, in addition to the water-saving Geberit in-wall systems. The tours make the home a quasi-public place, so a powder room near the entrance was the perfect location for a Geberit system and touchless Sigma80 actuator plate , with low-energy LED lighting, set to auto-flush.
Brunn used the Geberit dual-flush system in every one of his home’s four bathrooms. “The other two bathrooms have the stylish Sigma70 flush actuator plates . The last bathroom is the toilet room of the master suite, which again features the versatile Sigma80. I love the no-touch feature,” says Brunn.
In addition to saving water, the Geberit system makes any bathroom or powder room easier to clean than a standard, floor-mounted toilet: hiding the toilet tank inside the wall saves space and removes an unsightly and unnecessary obstacle. As Brunn says, “The toilet sits off the floor, making it easier to maintain the flooring around it.”
Geberit in-wall toilet systems gave Brunn’s bathrooms the minimalist, space-saving look he wanted by mounting the toilet on the wall and concealing the tank and other functional components in the wall. Brunn sums up the benefits of the system this way: “The additional space of the wall-hung toilet creates better designed toilet rooms and powder rooms.”