Only one spot left on the 2016 RIBA House of the Year shortlist! RIBA announced today that Modern Mews by Coffey Architects and The Garden House by Hayhurst and Co as one of the seven shortlisted houses that still have a chance to be crowned House of the Year, which distinguishes the year's most innovative house designed by a UK-based architect. The winner will be broadcast on BBC Channel 4's “Grand Designs” TV series on December 15.
Garden House in Hackney, east London by Hayhurst and Co
Project excerpt: “The Garden House replaces a single storey workshop built by the clients in the mid-1990s. The brief was to form a home and studio; which maximised the space and natural light available within their tight 85 square metre site behind Victorian housing in Hackney’s de Beauvoir Conservation area. The house is entered through a winter garden flooded with top-light from a mirror-polished stainless steel clad rooflight. This leads on to a connected set of living spaces lit by natural light through strategically placed and sculptured rooflights. These give the ground floor an ethereal quality of light, which sets off the careful selected material palette [...] The roof is a bespoke hanging garden, formed by refined, lapped, and elegant stainless steel trays hung over a GRP membrane. 800 sedums and heathers are planted into the stepped beds...”
Captivated by the meticulous attention to detail in the house, the jury cited the architects for “skillfully creat[ing] a rich and layered experience in a very small space. It gives the owners a peaceful and private space to live and work, which is a real achievement given the overlooked and enclosed nature of the site.”
Modern Mews in central London by Coffey Architects
Project excerpt: “The challenges involved in making a home from an existing mews house enclosure are two-fold – firstly to carve a useful space from a small site of approximately three by eight metres and secondly to bring light into what is a single aspect building. Effectively, it is an intricately designed and constructed piece of joinery crafted to live in. The existing four storey mews house suffered from a dark interior due to only having windows to the front despite being 8m deep. The master bedroom and en-suite on lower ground enjoyed no natural light and the bedrooms on top floors felt disconnected and underused due to the tiny spiral stair at the rear of the building.
Coffey Architects moved the stair to the centre to avoid corridors taking up valuable space and approached the whole project as one large piece of joinery adding clarity to the and connectivity to the whole house. At the centre a stair pierces four floors of accommodation in a spectacular burst of light [...] Additionally translucent sliding doors are added so the rooms enjoy natural light even when the doors are closed [...] The white painted textured inner brick skin helps with the refraction of the light, adding to a kaleidoscope effect [...] A fine marriage of planning, control of light and rigorous detailing has very cleverly multiplied the use of space to create a family home well beyond the client’s aspirations.”
Photos courtesy of RIBA.
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