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Interlock House

Floorplan of the Interlock House.

Floor Plan

The most public area of the house; it opens to the gardens on the north and south. It is used for entertaining, dining, hobbies, etc. depending on furniture arrangement.
Sun Porch
A recessed porch and an extension of the Hall. It can be opened on three sides, collects thermal energy, and allows for natural ventilation. The sun porch can be used for lounging, gardening, and engaging the seasons.
Windows on the eastern and southern faces of the house provide ample morning sunlight. This space is used for cooking and daily rituals such as eating, reading, watching tv, etc.
A semi-private space; used for sleeping, working. The bed can be folded up to provide additional floor space while entertaining.
Sun Porch looking towards the Hall. Bedroom looking towards the Hall. Rendering of the Kitchen. Kitchen looking towards the Hall.


The Interlock House is a true example of form following function. The aesthetics of the house are based primarily on what an individual in our target market would need: universal design, color and contrast, along with a relatively compact space that still feels spacious, light, and airy.

The materials and color schemes on the interior of the house (e.g., greens, oranges, and beiges) have been selected from renewable or recycled materials. In keeping with universal design principles, depth perception is enhanced by selecting horizontal surfaces (e.g., floors, countertops) that are distinctly darker than the vertical surfaces and ceiling. This provides appropriate contrasts for residents with deteriorating sight. The ceilings are light tones that reflect as much light from the northern windows as possible.

Major sponsors Iowa State University U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon U.S. Department of Energy National Renewable Energy Laboratory