LOCATION : ALBERT PARK, VICTORIA
STATUS : UNDER CONSTRUCTION
Nestled in a diverse neighbourhood pocket in Albert Park, the original building was a dilapidated double-fronted Victorian book-ended by a double-storey terrace house on its south side.
Our design response is governed by the strict heritage rulings of the area. The new addition is contemporary and ‘of its time’ and is clearly distinguishable from the heritage building. It is this distinction that enhances the status and character of the heritage building.
The subject site is modestly sized and irregular in shape, which presents a challenge when crafting functional and practical living spaces. The existing lean-to’s are messy in layout and clustered in an ad-hoc fashion so our goal is to retain and restore the existing front of house whilst improving the flow and functionality of the old+new house overall. The typical “rear extension” treatment was turned on its head - living spaces were promoted upstairs and all bedrooms were organised an ground level which borrows the inherent privacy and security afforded by a new boundary wall facing the lanway.
The facade treatment and articulation of the new addition drew inspiration from the previous forms of the old lean-to's. It's celebrating the classic pitched roofs of old Victorians in the neighbourhood by referencing these triangular shapes in the upper floor's external batten screen. This batten screen not only presents a clear external graphic to the laneway, but also protects privacy by shielding views into the neighbours' gardens. A full-height clear polycarbonate wall on the internal face of the upstairs living spaces still allows for northerly light into the rooms. During the day, soft daylight illuminates the elevated living spaces and when the sun sets, these spaces become lanterns under the night sky.
Downside Up House is the result not compromising light, space and quality of living whilst not being able to fulfill a typical "rear-ground-level-extension-facing-a-backyard" approach.