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Bullfrog pan home set to revolutionise traditional home construction

A residential home situated in Benoni, east of Johannesburg, is set to change how South Africans view the building of a comfortable family home. Instead of using traditional brick and mortar, first time home builders Ryan and his father Patrick Fitzgerald have used this home as a pilot project to explore how to build an upmarket home while using alternative building materials and systems that are able to achieve an energy efficient sustainable design. Significantly, the home has combined the use of natural materials and drywalling.

Architect Brent Rahme from Quintessential Design, designed the home to maximise the space and capture the breath-taking views of Bullfrog Pan while showcasing the abilities of all the products that were used, products from leading interior building solutions group, Saint-Gobain Gyproc. Brent has had a long history of working with Saint-Gobain and specifying their various products.

“The reason I chose this building method is that I believe in the system; I’ve been exposed to it before and it is comfortable for building and living. The walls are aesthetically pleasing and it’s a nice monolithic look. The HabitoTM Walls are fully skimmed with RhinoLite Multipurpose plaster and the walls are smooth and straight,” says homeowner Ryan Fitzgerald.

HabitoTM, an industry-first high strength drywall, was launched locally just last month and provides a building solution which is unsurpassed in strength and durability. The superior load bearing quality of this new drywall absorbs knocks and bumps and dramatically reduces wear and tear.

Re-iterating these unique attributes, architect Brent Rahme also commented that the HabitoTM Walls are much denser and do not break under their own weight as a standard plasterboard does. There is also very little wastage during the construction process while the finish quality of the board is excellent.

“Although the installation is slower due to the board being much harder, the benefit of hanging anything onto HabitoTM Walls is amazing. You don’t need a stud locator to find specific studs and you can hang anything just where you like it. We also had less material wastage and overall less wastage on site. Due to the HabitoTM boards being so hard this results in much less breakages. The installation of the built in cupboards directly onto HabitoTM was easy and rapid, contributing to an efficient installation. If I were to build a house for myself, I would definitely use HabitoTM in it,’’ says Louw du Plessis from LSF Building Solutions, sub-contractors on the project

The main contractor on this project was Garry Hoey from RazorBill, who said that the use of such innovative materials made this a very exciting project.

Not only do HabitoTM boards have the strength of brick and the benefits of drywall, they also provide acoustic and thermal comfort by minimising noise transmissions between rooms and enhancing the thermal properties to create a home that is warm in winter and cool in summer.

This home requires no air conditioning or additional heating, even though it is predominantly west facing.

Besides HabitoTM, other Saint-Gobain wall and ceiling systems products used in this home include:

Gyproc Gyptone Big line 6 with Activ’Air
Gyproc Moisture Resistant Boards
Isover Cavitybatt Insulation
Isover Aerolite Insulation
Weber ETICS External Cladding System

Cleaner air provides a more comfortable working and living space with higher productivity and improved health as a result. Activ’Air, a revolutionary Gyproc plasterboard, improves indoor air quality by permanently reducing formaldehyde even after multiple renovations. It is a passive system which is more effective than additional ventilation.


“I’ve changed my career path by project managing my own home, and will be developing homes in the future using innovative materials,”

Ryan Fitzgerald

Gyproc customer service Toll free 0860 272 829

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