These Hungry Horse homes look a lot like the Shire

Print Article

Laura Reynolds and Walter Rowntree at their new dome homes in Hungry Horse last week.

Walter Rowntree and Laura Reynolds hope to soon be living in a house that looks like it might fit closer into a scene from the mythical “Lord of Rings” than Hungry Horse, Montana.

The couple have been working on four monolithic concrete dome houses. The homes have a host of advantages over a traditional stick house. For one, they’re very energy efficient, even on a hot summer evening, they’re cool inside.

Secondly, they’re incredibly durable and virtually storm proof. In some states, they’re used as tornado shelters..

“If the dam breaks, they might float down and find a new spot for themselves,” Rowntree quipped.

The domes aren’t just concrete — they’re also covered in a foam outer shell with insulation properties as well.

All told, they’re three inches of concrete and three inches of foam.

Inside, however, they’re not very big. Each dome is just about 400 square feet in size. While the initial building costs is about 10 percent higher than a traditional home, the domes over time should make that up in energy savings, Rowntree notes.

They should also last a very long time — some estimates put them at a lifespan of 500 years.

The couple built four of the domes on a lot in Hungry Horse. They plan on renting out two and living in the other two.

They look like something out of J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings” where the hobbits lived in dome homes called the Shire.

“We’re real interested in small inexpensive cottages for affordable housing,” Reynolds said. They got the idea from the website monolithic.org.

Since they’re concrete, they’re fireproof as well — the shells won’t burn.

“It’s like living in a cooler chest,” Reynolds said.

The couple hope to have the homes done by this winter.

Print Article

Read More Front Page Slider

Tours of Columbia Falls Aluminum Co. site on tap

September 11, 2019 at 8:11 am | Hungry Horse News The Columbia Falls Aluminum Co. will have an open house and driving tour of the old plant site off Aluminum Drive Sept. 18. Tours will run from noon to 4 p.m. and are open to the public. The old alu...

Comments

Read More

$30 million school bond goes to voters next week

September 11, 2019 at 8:14 am | Hungry Horse News The Columbia Falls elementary bond request to build a new school at Glacier Gateway Elementary and significantly remodel Ruder Elementary will be in the mail next week. Nearly 9,000 ballots will go ...

Comments

Read More

Major subdivision planned for east of river outside Columbia Falls

September 10, 2019 at 8:10 am | Hungry Horse News By LYNETTE HINTZE For the Hungry Horse News A major subdivision is being proposed east of the Flathead River just outside Columbia Falls. The Benches would include 48 single-family homes and 30 sh...

Comments

Read More

Residents want more info as Hungry Horse water increase looms

September 06, 2019 at 12:05 pm | Hungry Horse News Residents say they want to see harder figures before they’ll endorse a water rate increase in Hungry Horse, but the system’s debt service is already costing the average user more than $15 a month. D...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(406) 892-2151
PO BOX 189, 926 Nucleus Avenue
Columbia Falls, MT 59912

©2019 Hungry Horse News Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X