Butte Residence by Carney Logan Burke Architects
Andrew Maynard Architects designed the renovation of the Moor House, located in
How do you create a home in 4.5m? It’s tricky, but a lot of fun.
A family of four had lived in this modest, ageing house for almost eight years. As the children neared their teenage years something had to be done. Abandoning their home and moving elsewhere was not an option as the family was an important part of a thriving community.
Within this pocket of Fitzroy is a dense mix of workers’ cottages and small terraces. All are modest in size, many are dark and cold. Many of the cottages and terraces are in original condition, with a simple facade hiding an assemblage of brick and weatherboard lean-tos in the rear yard looking onto bluestone laneways. These lean-tos create a mesh of detailed and varying volumes, in stark contrast to the simplicity of the street front. When building in the rear of a property in this context, facing onto the laneway, one is acutely aware of the smallness and texture of the existing built form. Within this context the burden is on the designer is to respond to the assemblage of small volumes while also maximising the potentials of the owners’ brief.
As Fitzroy has gentrified we have seen renewal take place in unsympathetic ways. There are numerous examples of this assemblage of dark brick and weatherboard being replaced with large contemporary objects that dominate its context. The tactic at Moor Street was to maximise the interior functions and available space, while also responding to the context by creating a single building out of three small objects rather than a single contemporary monolith. The tired lean-to which housed the kitchen, bathroom, dining and laundry were removed. These functions were relocated and updated along with the addition of a master bedroom over. The original brick terrace was retained, tidied and brought back to life. In the centre of the original house was a small light well containing a beautiful, yet constrained, Japanese maple tree. The family often found themselves conversing through this lightwell. Conversations took place, through the maple, from upstairs bedroom to kitchen opposite, to study space and even the bathroom. The maple was retained and the lightwell expanded and surrounded in glass, bringing the tree into the living spaces. The conversations between spaces and levels, through the maple, are better and easier than ever.
The separate boxes on the upper level contain the master bedroom. This space is surrounded by the canopy of the maple to the south and the canopy of a large gum tree to the north, making the master bedroom feel much like a treehouse. Through the gum’s canopy are views over Fitzroy, revealing the detailed assemblage of the brick and weatherboard lean-tos of the surrounding workers’ cottages and small terraces.
Design: Andrew Maynard Architects
Photography by Peter Bennetts
Modern white house design by Widawscy Studio Architektury
Widawscy Studio Architektury have recently completed the D58 House in Mikolów, Poland.
Minimalism and a maximum of open space are the basic assumptions of presented interior. Designers arranged them with elegant simplicity. They decided to contrasting statement of white, black and American walnut. Large windows overlooking the garden and the forest heighten the feeling of spaciousness.
The ground floor is dominated by white and broken black accents. On a white background, accompanied by black and walnut veneer accents appears the designer bar stools, round table and glass lamp. Suspended on white wall modern painting by Polish artist becomes a true work of art, especially in so frugal interior. Black wall with TV and fireplace creates a contrasting background for sofas and lamps.
The only separate the interior of the ground floor is the bathroom. Glass high door to the bathroom illuminate to the hallway with natural light. The bathroom is dominated by contrasts. The Black and white tiles together with the mirror plate in the form of a brick adds the interior elegance. On the 1st floor the bedroom and the bathroom is dominated by delicate statement combined with nut, without strong contrasts. Shades of white dominate in bedroom, and the travertine in bathroom. Glass doors divide the bedroom from the bathroom, visually merging these two interior spaces. The gym is the only energy and color interior throughout the house.
Design: Widawscy Studio Architektury / Katarzyna Widawska, Tomasz Widawski
Photography by Tomasz Borucki
SB Architects designed this modern home design in the Bernal Heights neighborhood of San Francisco.
This urban infill site in San Francisco presented a unique opportunity to create a new, free-standing home, while maintaining the site’s existing structure as a separate residential unit. The site originally housed a single structure – a one-story, one-bedroom home over a two-car garage, constructed in 1931 and totaling only 550 square feet of living space. Since the original structure was built at the rear of the 2,000-square-foot corner lot, and zoning allowed for two units on the site, a new home could be built at the front of the lot, capitalizing upon views and a more prominent street address.
The goal for this project was to seize the unique zoning opportunity to build a new home on this desirable, but never-developed, corner site in a dense San Francisco neighborhood. The design concept was driven by the micro-features of the site and the desire to create a contemporary design expression that was rooted in Northern California architectural and sustainable ideals. The basic envelope was shaped in large part by the neighborhood planning code, which dictated elements such as bay windows, notched side yards and inset entries to create movement and shadow along the streetscape. While the design is rooted in the local vernacular and code within this traditional San Francisco neighborhood, the interpretation is distinctly clean and modern.
The naturally sloping site inspired the idea of a focal stair core wrapped by private areas and topped by a dramatic skylight, bathing the interiors in natural light and forming a direct link between through the private spaces on the entry level and the upper-level public spaces. The central stair core also creates a strong vertical wall on the exterior, resulting in a composition quite different than the typical horizontal layering of living spaces. The corner location and internal organization of space created an exterior expression that broke free of horizontal restraints to create a blend of horizontal and vertical lines, punctuated by a strong cantilevered roof.
Locating the main living spaces on the top floor afforded dramatic views of the San Francisco skyline and garnered abundant natural light, significantly decreasing electricity use. Windows on all aspects of the building, unusual in this urban setting, provide an abundance of natural light in the interior spaces. Making use of extensive experience in hospitality design, the design team created a resort-based living experience within this 1,750-square-foot custom home, with open, flowing spaces, clean, high-end finishes and rich woods. A rainscreen system supports Ipe banding on the exterior façade, while walnut flooring and cabinets combine with cedar cladding on interior ceilings and exterior soffits to bring warmth to the interiors.
Designed with a careful eye toward sustainability, this home is Tier Two Energy Star certified, making it over 35% more efficient than California Title 24 requirements. A 95% efficient gas boiler supplies domestic hot water and hydronic heating, and a 2.5-kilowatt photovotaic system with net metering provides solar energy, while energy star appliances and water efficient plumbing fixtures throughout ensure an efficient use of resources.
Bark Architects designed the Marcus Beach House, located on the Sunshine Coast of Queensland, Australia.
The Marcus Beach house celebrates a natural, coastal setting providing its occupants with an inextricable relationship to the landscape and sensitive surrounding environment. The dwelling explores lightness, filtering natural breezes, layers of transparency and integrating indoor / outdoor spaces within dynamic patterns of light and shadow, being a simple frame to enable a contemporary sustainable lifestyle to unfold.
Whilst feeling like a ‘beach house’ sited 250 meters away from Marcus Beach, the basic ‘pavilion’ plan was sketched out in the sand during an early site visit: a simple diagram of two pavilions placed either side of a venerable 100 year old Morton Bay Ash that takes centre stage to the scale, proportions and life of the house around it. The pavilions sit lightly on the site and are linked by a transparent bridge in an arrangement that opens all the spaces to the light, breeze and garden views of the north. The garden is protected by a perimeter wall wrapped in endemic vines providing an acoustic ‘green’ buffer to a nearby busy road.
On approach from the street, the sloping terrain naturally guides an axial timber boardwalk under a simple timber pergola structure arriving in the courtyard opposite the Morton Bay Ash. The main pavilion to the west accommodates living spaces focused around a double height deck space overlooking the swimming pool and northern garden. The Master Bedroom suite is accessed via a polycarbonate clad stair tower that is by day a contemplative space and by night, a lantern. The Morton Bay Ash casts shadows onto the polycarbonate further animating the edges of the courtyard and bringing the landscape inside the house. The recent additions of a study ‘pop out,’ enclosed passage link below the bridge, Laundry and Powder room further animate the edges of the courtyard space whilst responding to the needs of its new occupants.
The house is open and light and possesses simple sustainable design principles to passively defend the occupants from the elements. Windows and doors are strategically positioned to capture the prevailing breezes whilst roof overhangs are generous protecting the house from direct summer sunlight. Air conditioning has not been installed in the Marcus Beach House nor is it desired. Artificial lighting is kept to a minimum due to the generous amount and position of glazing, particularly facing north. The roof over the Master Bedroom pavilion rises to the north providing a band of high level, operable, clerestory glazing capturing daylight and allowing any warm air to escape, setting up an effective ‘stack effect’ natural cooling process.
The connection between the deck and living spaces is dynamic and direct. As the heart of the house, the covered double height outdoor room is actively used all year round as dappled sunlight is filtered through a timber batten screen hung below the roof structure. Indoor and outdoor realms are connected through an interlocking series of alcoves and nooks like a low edge deck seat and reading nook pop-out located off the stair landing. The courtyard and Morton Bay Ash are a focal point in which almost all rooms within the dwelling enjoy a connection.
Architecture: Bark Architects
Builder: Murray Wall
Structural Engineer: Meecham Engineers
Photography by Christopher Frederick Jones
Breathe Architecture designed the Orrong Road House in Melbourne, Australia.
The sun and wind are channeled through the streets of this beach side suburb, deep into the plan of this once dark and damp Edwardian home. An oasis like space now waits at the rear of the old dwelling bathed in light and cooled by the sea breeze in summer.
By peeling away the former addition and reorientating the floor plan to maximise solar access, the new building enhances the quality and functionality of the interior throughout.
The roof pitches down to the south, preventing overshadowing of adjoining properties and assisting natural ventilation circulating through low and high level openings. An insulated floor slab with embedded hydronic heating coils and double glazed Jarrah (Class 2) windows, provides a low energy solution to achieve a high level of internal comfort. Steel mesh awnings are calculated to exclude summer sun and allow winter sun to penetrate the interior spaces, subsequently storing its heat within the thermal mass of the floor slab during the cooler months.
Alterstudio designed the East Windsor Residence in Austin, Texas.
Extraordinary views in the heart of the city and a small buildable footprint limited by restrictive easements prompted a thin, three-story home with the main living spaces and master suite on the top floor – essentially a one-bedroom loft with 270° views. A 16’ ipe screen envelopes the body of the house, and rests delicately atop a base of long courses of black Leuders limestone. The visitor enters through a pivoting glass door, where the natural stone gives way to its dressed counterpart, and is immediately greeted by a stair of massive ebonized oak treads floating above twin steel channels, and hanging in a three-story vertical space. Beyond, an etched glass wall captures the projected shadows of a stand of giant bamboo, and a band of clear glass directs one’s gaze out to a private garden.
Punctuating the ipe facade are two steel box windows, their mirror-like reflection or deep shadow are posed against the filigree of the screen. In the evening this screen transforms into a lantern revealing a collection of spaces behind. The screen also holds the possibility of transforming the building when two 10’ sections dramatically unfold and reveal the formal dining room.
Upstairs, efforts are made to embrace the expansive view with an unmitigated ceiling plane that provides a surface for reflected light, while the screen’s 18” extension above the floor level gently corrals the visitor. Adjacent power lines to the west are eschewed, although a constellation of portholes arrayed across this wall embrace the dramatic western light and enliven the facade from the high street beyond. Here, an open plan is accentuated by laminated low-e corner glazing, twin Akari lanterns and sliding panels. Exquisitely matched Lacewood veneer cabinetry and a marble bathing area punctuate the ensemble and add a sense of finesse and delicacy throughout.
Photography by Paul Finkel | Piston Design and Jonathan H. Jackson
Belzberg Architects designed the Kona Residence, located in Hawaii.
Nestled between cooled lava flows, the Kona residence situates its axis not with the linearity of the property but rather with the axiality of predominant views available to the site. Within the dichotomy of natural elements and geometric hardscape the residence attempts to integrate both the surrounding views of volcanic mountain ranges to the east and ocean horizons westward. The program is arranged as a series of pods distributed throughout the property, each having its own unique features and view opportunities.
The pods are programmatically assigned as two sleeping pods with common areas, media, master suite and main living space. A central axis becomes the organizational and focal feature for the entire house, connecting each of the pods through an exterior gallery corridor. To help maintain the environmental sensitivity of the house, 2 separate arrays of roof mounted photovoltaic panels offset the residence energy usage while the choice of darker lava stone help heat the pool water via solar radiation. Rain water collection and redirection to 3 drywells that replenish the aquifer are implemented throughout the property.
Reclaimed teak timber from older barns and train tracks are recycled for the exterior of the home. Together with stacked and cut lava rock, the two materials form a historically driven medium embedded in Hawaiian tradition. 3-D modeling and digital fabrication through CNC machinery was incorporated to further enhance traditional elements in a contemporary arrangement. Local basket weaving culture was the inspiration for the entry pavilion which reenacts the traditional gift upon arrival ceremony. CNC milled ceilings and screens throughout the house continue the abstract approach to traditional Hawaiian wood carving.
Design Architect: Belzberg Architects
Principal: Hagy Belzberg
Project Manager: Barry Gartin
David Cheung, Carina Bien-Willner, Barry Gartin, Cory Taylor, Andrew Atwood, Chris Arntzen, Brock DeSmit, Dan Rentsch, Lauren Zuzack.
Interiors: MLK Studio
Photography: Benny Chan (Fotoworks), Belzberg Architects.