Located in Australia, This side by side wood paneling and brick house are owned by two generations of one family. The old structure runs east/west while the new houses run north/south. The fence between each building slides away to create one large backyard.
There are few topographical problem to force homes to have a small grounds. This is unfortunate as many of the best homes around the world are modest in size and maximise what precious outdoor space there is. In Australia people go wide and low.
This vertical concept homes stacked spaces by three levels high. Maximise the backyard on a small site. In a megacity like Seoul, Tokyo, New York and many more. Live in vertically concept homes is a way of life that generates efficiently housing on limited space while also making the most suitable concept for urban condition. It creates a vibrant way of life that sprawl and car dependence could never achieve. But what if we introduce a footprint restriction beyond what is required? What if we build a tall thin structure that maximises the modest backyard? We create spaces that cavernous spaces with light cascading from above. Each space different in personality and function so that the modest home can adapt to the various complex moods of its occupants.
The new building is built across the rear of the terraces. A visible gap remains between the two structure. Weather is filtered of this cavernous space by glass infills. This is where you place the spiral stair, interacting with the cedar of the new and both the aged brick of the terrace.
This vertical concept homes using new form clad entirely in cedar materials and avoided using new plastic, shiny or synthetic materials. The materials have had a past life. Raw steel plate and detailing describes the openings between structures and the threshold between old and new. Dark plywood paneling rises through the light-filled void between the structures. Designer strategically use mirror on the cabinetry in the dining area to make the space visually large while giving the illusion that light is coming from two sides and that we are surrounded by garden.
The key of this vertical concept homes are create a modest-sized home flourish is to provide a number of spaces with various character. The active family/living spaces don’t need to be large, yet they must have loose boundaries. The original front sitting room is retained. After this the living spaces can open from the dining room to the rear fence. The side fences can both be opened to let outdoor activity spill beyond the living area.
The kitchen bench continues through the rear glass wall. The inbuilt barbecue sits on the end of the bench. The levels above the living areas provide quiet contemplative spaces. Each space is connected with both the rear yard and the internal lightwell.
The buildings sustainability is a core responsibility in the same way that plumbing and lightning are. The new windows are double glazed and the Glass roofs can be thermally challenging therefore the designer have used high performance glass with automated louvres over so that sunlight stops before it hits the glass, not after.
There’s no green house effect here. The design made you able to adjust the louvres at anytime between full sunlight and complete block out. Louvres to the south of the lightwell are automated to allow the space to quickly vent should heat build up. High performance insulation has been used in the new walls and roof. The existing terrace roofs have also had an insulation upgrade. Solar panels cover the roof.
Architects Austin Maynard Architects
Location Richmond, VIC, Australia
Architect in Charge Andrew Maynard, Mark Austin
Project Year 2012
Photographs Peter Bennetts, Michael Ong