What were the key challenges?
Difficult site orientation - The existing house faced north towards the street with secluded private open space located predominantly to the rear of the site, limiting opportunities to access direct northern sunlight
Sensitive integration of an extension with the dominating gable roof form of the existing houseInstilling a sense of richness, texture and detail that would compliment the materials of the existing house
Fulfilling the client's brief within the constraints of a tight budget
Orientation was a key concern for the project given the block faced north to the street and secluded private open space was located south of the dwelling.
In order to fulfil the clients' brief and minimise alterations to the existing building for cost reasons, the additional living space was located at the rear (south side) of the existing dwelling where the ex-kitchen used to be.
While generally not ideal, it became evident that the removal of internal walls that defined the existing kitchen, laundry and powder room in order to create one large space open to the east and west via new and enlarged window and door openings would be an efficient and effective way to significantly improve the feeling of spaciousness and quality of light within the ground floor living spaces.
Moreover, an improved porosity through the dwelling could be achieved thus connecting outdoor living spaces on both sides with living spaces within and imbuing the interior spaces with a sense of being much larger than they actually were by borrowing perceived space from outside.
The laundry and powder room was relocated and reconfigured into the under-utilised, southern portion of the ex-living room. In these rooms, white rectangular wall tiles and mirrors have been used to bounce light around and continue the play between perceived space vs actual space.
Considered insertions of joinery within new and reconfigured spaces has provided the house with more useful and tailored storage solutions.
The reorganisation of the plan also meant that the sitting room (ex-living/family room) was tailored to more intimate and useful proportions and, with its northern orientation, has become a favoured place for my clients' to withdraw and indulge their passion for music.