This detached Victorian house was extended to accommodate the needs of a young family with three small children.
The programme is organized into two distinctive structures: the larger and higher volume is placed at the back of the house to face the garden and make the best use of the south orientation and to accommodate a large Family Room open to the new Kitchen.
A longer and thinner volume, only 1.15m wide, stands to the western side of the house and accommodates a Toilet, a Utility and a dining booth facing the Family Room. All the functions in the secondary volume have direct access either from the original house or the rear extension, thus generating a hierarchy of served and servant volumes, a relationship that is homogeneous to that between the house and the extension.
The timber structures, while distinctive in their proportions, are connected by a shallow volume that doubles as a bench to create an architectural continuum and to emphasize the effect of a secondary volume wrapped around a primary one.
While the extension makes use of a modern idiom, so that it is clearly distinguished from the original house and so that the history of its development becomes immediately apparent, the size of the red cedar cladding boards, left untreated to allow a natural silvering process, matches that of the Victorian brickwork to bind house and extension together.
A tall and slender pivoting door, positioned at the boundary between the original house and the new intervention, allows a direct view of the garden from the front of the house and facilitates an innovative relationship with the outside.
This project offers the opportunity to revise and refine concepts and principles that FPA had outlined in the design of their house extension project in Surbiton where the project is split into two separate sub-briefs and organized around two distinctive new buildings.
The clients’ brief is interpreted as an opportunity to refine the appearance of the existing volumes overlooking the patio and devise a new external family room, framed by red cedar clap boards, laid to suggest a chevron floor pattern.