Modern Suburban Villa - Herriot + Melhuish tucked this two level sanctuary in between established houses in the Wellington surrounds. It's U shaped floorplan forming a sunny courtyard behind their northerly neighbour.
Initially wanting a remodel of the existing villa, the clients' final brief entailed a bedroom and office on ground level along with the living spaces, a further bedroom for visiting family and a library. A north facing courtyard was also a requirement to provide a protected and private entry - and somewhere for summer evenings outdoors.
The challenge of a narrow site and small site area, along with the associated height to boundary restrictions, meant innovative sollutions to sneak two stories in. These created a snug kitchen / dining area downstairs and set back bedroom and library upstairs.
The orientation of the site virtually due north and west, its linear nature, and the need for off street parking, dictated the placement of the built forms.
Views down the valley to the north and west are lapped up from the upstairs bedroom and library.
There was a conscious effort to avoid a totally open plan living space, instead creating two distinct areas where people could gather; the kitchen / dining area, or the main living space (to deal with larger family gatherings).
The home is organized around three main structural block walls that cantilever to support the upper level floor, and also provide a rhythm of structural elements along the main circulation route.
Building height restrictions lowered the ceiling height beneath the upper level spaces, which is reinforced with the use of exposed timber beams.
This ceiling treatment contrasts the finish and scale of the adjoining main living space to the west, and bedroom / office to the east.
The home is intended from the street to read as a contemporary version of a suburban villa, with the centrally placed windows to the bedroom and a rhythm of zinc sprayed steel verandah posts.
Materials have been limited to painted horizontal weatherboards on the ground level, and contrasting stained vertical boards and battens upstairs. Large sliding timber doors have been inserted into an aluminium glazing system, and external steel columns are zinc sprayed.
The raw palette of interior materials includes: concrete blocks, polished concrete floor, timber paneling, expressed timber joists, and timber / plywood joinery.
Architect Herriot + Melhuish: Architecture Ltd
Project team Max Herriot, Marcus Breitenmoser, Oliver Markham, Sara Newport
Contractor Dalton Construction