North Fitzroy Warehouse images/840.jpg

North Fitzroy Warehouse

The design appropriates the original frame and volume of the garage that previously occupied the site. The scale, forms and materials of the garage was domesticated through the use of an honest and robust palette of materials and the breakdown of a single volume into a series of discrete areas. The result is a home that is appropriate for a growing family: in response to the clients brief it is simple and uncluttered without being too cool or precious.

The new works vary ceiling and floor levels to compress and expand the original volume. More private areas such as bedrooms and studies are accommodated by volumes of a smaller and more intimate scale. By contrast the living space is vast and presents a refined version of the original garage volume. The height and expanse of the ceiling has been amplified by keeping the windows to the base of the walls and by the slit above the south wall which gently washes the entire south wall providing a constant source of daylight and reminding one of the original space.

The original volume is also legible in the garden. The burnt frame of the last three bays of the garage structure remains to define an outdoor room of sorts adjacent to the interior living space. This room is defined by a deck and forms a threshold between the interior and the play area at the rear of the site. This area can be extended by the laneway to the east.

A boardwalk extends from the entry right through the ground floor to the outdoor room where it terminates in the deck. This boardwalk forms the main path through the house; helps to imply discreet spaces within the open plan areas; provides a commandeering location for the kitchen and accommodates all services, which run below it.

North Fitzroy Warehouse

Completed 1998