What was once a shop building in Sydney's Inner West is now a sustainable, multi-purpose family home.
The architects were tasked with designing a sustainable space to support a family with children of three different age brackets, as well as a space that could support working from home. The result is a unique spatial assembly of internal and external rooms and volumes where compact private spaces are supplemented with generous living, dining, kitchen and play spaces for family interaction. Meanwhile, a home office can be accessed separately from the rest of the house to receive clients without interrupting the family.
There is a ‘public path’ that continues through the house, interwoven with private spaces arranged around the central atrium. Outside these spaces there are a series of garden terraces for relaxation and retreat.
The plan progressively reduces as the house rises, ending in an intimate living space that is enclosed by the curved inner planes of the roof, looking out onto district views.
Materials have been kept simple. The materials palette includes white set render, off form concrete, bamboo flooring, hoop pine ply and clear anodised framed glazing.
- A three-storey lit atrium brings light and winter sun deep into the plan and creates an effective ventilation path, drawing air from garden terraces through the house
- Exposed concrete soffits and walls as well as historic masonry walls provide thermal mass and radiate cool air in hot weather
- In winter the building’s well-insulated envelope holds heat gained through north glazing at three levels, while the dark polished bluestone floor radiates absorbed winter sun
- Rainwater harvesting is connected to toilets, laundry and garden
- LED lighting is used throughout
- Hot water is provided through renewable energy (heat pump)
- Heating is a combination of high-efficiency European hydronic system and doubled-sided gas fireplace
- The house uses less electricity than a typical one-person household and exceeds water efficiency targets