The client owned the site which contained an existing ‘50s beach shack – of a lovely modest scale in a street of what would have been similar houses. The downside of much of Queensland architecture in the 50s was the houses were not designed for the conditions (hot with small windows, no ventilation and no insulation). The relatively generous room sizes and ceiling heights of previous eras were reduced, which exacerbated these problems.
We kept the modest scale to the street, converted the garage into a living room (like many of the old houses this was placed on the most beneficial aspect,ie. to the north) and opened up the bedrooms. At the rear we provided a new covered outdoor area as well as an upper bedroom that took advantage of the views and light. Below the new bedroom was a generous combined laundry and bathroom centred around a very special bath. We used large custom made polycarbonate clad doors so that from the bath one looked out to the existing, very pleasant, established garden.
Sustainable features include all natural ventilation (the owner told us that even the ceiling fan hadn’t been required during the recent summer), solar hot water and, importantly, retention and reuse of the existing building. Often this isn’t cost effective and it needs a commitment from the client and architect to pursue this path.
Floor Areas: existing: 97.5 m2; new internal: 41.1 m2; new external: 10.8 m2; carport: 19.9 m2.
Builder: Seiler and Yates Building Contractors;
Sheet Metal: Studio Steel;
Canvas: Creative Canvas and Blinds;
Cabinets/Joinery: G and M Craftsman Cabinets.
Status: complete (2010).