Re: Designing common house
From: Robin Allison (
Date: Fri, 15 Feb 2013 17:39:43 -0800 (PST)
We have 4 large bifold doors and several fire exits off or near the dining
room, so the fire requirements (for materials) were not onerous.

There have been lots of requests for the photos! Hope it works for some of


-----Original Message-----
From: Philip Proefrock [mailto:architect [at]] 
Sent: Saturday, 16 February 2013 8:11 a.m.
To: cohousing-l [at]; robin.allison [at]
Subject: Re: Designing common house

As described, this sounds like a fire hazard that would not meet American
building code requirements, but I could be wrong about that.  I would be
interested in seeing a picture of it to see how this was installed.

Philip Proefrock, AIA

On 2/15/2013
> From: "Robin Allison" <robin.allison [at]>
> The common house dining room at Earthsong Eco-Neighbourhood uses a 
> very simple, cheap and effective system for reducing the noise. We 
> have a high cathedral ceiling over the dining room, lined with narrow 
> timber battens nailed direct to the rafters over hessian (sacking 
> fabric), with gaps between the battens. This allows the noise to 
> travel through the hessian and be absorbed by the thermal insulation 
> between the rafters. This looks great, and is so effective that even 
> with 60 people dining and talking, it is a pleasant acoustic 
> environment. And yet it is still fine for musical performances etc, which
require more acoustic "brightness".
> I'm happy to send a photo to show what it looks like - email me direct 
> if you'd like one.
> Cheers
> Robin Allison
> Earthsong Eco-Neighbourhood
> Auckland, New Zealand

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