An old terrace in inner city Sydney, its rear dilapidated, bordering on potential collapse. A renovation replaces the footprint of the existing structure with the same functional elements: kitchen/eating area, bathroom, laundry and WC. The brief was to provide a new kitchen and bathroom, open up the house to the garden area and let more light into the existing interiors.
A good connection between the front rooms and the rear garden was essential. So rather than provide a separate bathroom, which because of the narrow site would obstruct the flow of the house, it was decided to break up the bathroom into separate components. The shower area was designed as an internal courtyard with translucent glass walls and doors and a retractable glass roof allowing light to flood the living area and kitchen area. The WC and laundry are in a small space opposite that aligns with the kitchen elements and staircase.
The sleek kitchen runs along one wall and high windows allow light and fresh air into the space. There is under floor heating in the concrete floors in the shower, WC and kitchen. A level timber deck creates a usable open space, vastly improving the connection between the interior and exterior areas. A built‐in BBQ, seating and storage complete this exterior room. The garden posed two issues. There were privacy concerns as it is overlooked by a number of other terraces. But it had a fascinating urban view of the surrounding roofs. The solution was to create a timber slatted fence, with selective parts missing to capture the best parts of the view, with other more solid screening sections creating privacy from neighbours at other view angles. Creeping vines, planted at the base of the fence, provide additional privacy. In spite of the small space, the lifestyle of the owners is vastly improved with the entire site at ground level becoming a living space.
About Chris Elliot Architects
Sydney‐based Chris Elliott Architects, established in 1992, are committed to the opportunities provided by new technologies whilst respectful of the natural and heritage qualities of place. Their work includes residential and commercial projects, with a special interest in larger scale architectural and urban design. Elliott believes the layering of different periods in a city, rather than replacement of the old with the singular statement, generates richness and beauty in built form. Elliott studied at UNSW Sydney and the Architectural Association UK. CEA was a finalist in the international competition for Federation Square, Melbourne; won “Visions for Green Square” a national ideas competition, Sydney; was a third prize winner for “Re‐Public” Park for the Homebush Bay Brickpit, Sydney; and Seacliff House won an AIA commendation in 2012.
Architect: Chris Elliott Architects
Project name: Hyland house
Typology: House renovation Total size: New extension: 26.5 sqm; garden: 14.1 sqm; existing house: 33.4 sqm Builder: Nessbit Constructions
Structural Engineer: Meinhardt
Landscape: Chris Elliott Architects
Photography: Richard Glover
Drawings, plans, sketches, concept: CEA