This project involves alterations and additions to a 1940’s Californian Bungalow for an architect and lawyer (and family). It is located in the ‘Garden Suburb’ of Menora, a suburb of tree-lined streets, parks and heritage homes.
This project incorporates re-cycled and plantation timbers as the primary material including; structure, cladding, flooring, doors, windows, cabinets, decking, balustrades, handrails, fencing, privacy screening, sun screening, skirtings and furniture.
Most importantly this project demonstrates a sensitive approach to adding on to an old Californian bungalow using timber as the primary material. This is no longer possible as the local council recently changed the Town Planning Scheme requiring all projects to be a ‘copy’ of the original house. If we renovated this house today it would have to be constructed from masonry and tiles. Whilst we appreciate the intent of this policy it is nevertheless an act of discrimination against other industries (such at the timber industry) and the possibility of developing the culture of our design and built environment.
Our project clearly identifies that it is not an attempt to copy the original house but incorporates the original house as the contextual basis from which the new parts can be developed. Special moments in the existing house are then exaggerated; moments of light, form, material, family inheritance, construction systems and structure are reinterpreted and abstracted but always delicately manipulated.
Existing cabinets, door and door frame are reinterpreted in the additions, materials remain the same but are detailed in a modernist manner. Old lead light doors are placed in a refined modernist detailed frame, the timber used on an inherited cabinet is reinterpreted as a stair balustrade and wall at the junction of the old and new. Significance is attributed to the old through a carefully coded application with the new.