Designing a modern house in a street classed as a character residential area doesn't have to be restrictive. This Brisbane property is in such an area. But architect Andrew Gutteridge of Arkhefield says in this instance the category covers a broad spectrum of styles.
"The street runs alongside the river, making it a desirable address. The architectural styles, however, range from Tuscan to Tudor, with a few traditional Queenslanders," he says. "As the character of the area has already changed significantly, we were able to loosely interpret the idea of a traditional Queenslander. A modern architectural response was also a significant part of the clients' brief."
To this end, the architect introduced familiar materials and typologies, but abstracted these to provide a much more contemporary expression of a traditional Queenslander.
Like these original houses, the roof extends to provide shelter to screened verandas, and the house is raised so it appears to sit on a light base.
"The site is long and thin, with the primary outlook to the northeast," Gutteridge says. "By extruding the roof form to wrap down one entire side of the house, we could shut down the house on that side and open it up to the northeast on the opposite side. The design lets the sun into the house in winter, but keeps it out in summer."
At the front of the house, a concrete wall and timber batten screen echo the sectional form of the extruded roof.
"This solid wall creates a sense of protection the family living room is shielded and cloaked," says Gutteridge. "At the same time, the louvred veranda wraps three sides of the room, providing filtered light and allowing the space to engage with the street. The screening also helps to visually soften the forms."