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Category: Texas

CAST STUDY : Rothell Home

A large, well-protected terradome earth sheltered home


We have lived in this home for 27 years. We bought it without any
information or knowledge about the house. It was about 2 years old
then. After much research and questioning we learned to let the house
do what it does best and we have very comfortable since. It is a very
solid home and shows almost none of the normal wear and tear of the
elements that above ground homes experience. About 7 years ago we did
renovate the inside and made it handicap accessible although it
already had wide doors and was ground level. Up keep on the home has
been very little over the years.

– Alva and Shirley Rothell


UPDATE 11/10/2017:

The rothell home has apparently changed hands, and is no longer for sale! Congrats to the lucky new owner, Bill Ellis, who says “ I have learned over the last two years waking up every morning ‘six feet under'”

CASE STUDY : Buckner House

An opulently furnished, almost surreal underground house in North Central Texas. This home blends retro with sci-fi with a classy timeless feel.

NOTE – as of writing, this earth sheltered house is for sale!

CASE STUDY : Denison Home

This amazing, owner-designed underground house has been dubbed “the safest house in texas”. Currently for sale in denison, TX, the property features bullet-resistant windows and heavyweight doors in an oddly classical design.

CASE STUDY : Legge Home (pool house)

This amazing architectural example is located in scenic Westlake Hills, TX. With an earth berm and partial earthen roof, the legge home’s pool house by architect Murray Ledge shows a good blend of aesthetic styles and eco-friendly design

CASE STUDY : Hill Country Residence

This otherwise traditional residence features a veritable ecosystem of local flora to add an ecological flavor. Located in the hill country in southwest Austin, TX, this personal residence is a great example of contemporary upscale ecological building

CASE STUDY : House Under the Hill

LINK : Texas Green Network (External Link)

LINK : Mike scarlett, builder of custom underground homes and shelters in Texas (External Link)

CASE STUDY : The Edgeland house in Austin, TX

A modern twist on an old style, the edgeland home combines a very stark modern veneer with an earthen-roof design that really incorporates organic elements without sacrificing luxury.

CASE STUDY : Arant Home

Photo: Copyright Mike Arant

This underground home is the model of a more recent development, being owner-constructed and occupied currently.

From the Owner:

“The square footage is about 2425. It took about 18 months for the concrete to completely cure and reach a stable interior temperature. We have had no leaks, cracks, or other problems, and are very happy with the finished result of all our planning and construction. Right now it is 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, but as soon as I get a 2 car garage built the current internal 1 car garage will be converted to a 3rd bedroom. In the initial design this was anticipated, so the space already has all power and air conditioning ducts in place. It will need only to frame in the garage door and finish the walls.”

OWNER UPDATE 4/29/2015 :

“We currently live in the home and are very happy with how it performs. It meets all of our expectations. It features large picture windows on the south and west sides, under 4′ overhangs. Since the blog was last updated we have built a 3 car attached garage and added 4 kw grid tied solar. The yard is planted to all native grasses, shrubs and wildflowers, which perform quite well with no irrigation. The roof is planted to Texas purple sage and lantana, which need no irrigation. Since construction over 30 trees of various varieties have been planted, with no irrigation other than drip on the citrus.”