XYZ House

Houses, Extension, City Beach, Australia
  • Architects: Mark Aronson Architecture
  • Area: 120 Area: 120 m²
  • Year: 2014 

XYZ House / Mark Aronson Architecture

The existing City Beach house is located at The Boulevard, a tree-lined wide drive with generous grass verges that connects the Perth suburbs of Leederville and Wembley with the Indian Ocean.

 

The original dwelling was designed by architect GE Swallow in 1962, and is a beautifully intact example of early 60’s West Australian modernist Architecture.  It comprises a low-pitched metal roof, with Donnybrook Stone and painted brickwork to the façade, whilst internally Jarrah floorboards and slim natural brickwork are expressed.

Located on a sloping site, the original building is split level with a double garage off the street and steps to a raised North-facing Verandah.  The `site is on a North-South alignment and is protected from the worst of the strong southwesterly gusts from the ocean, being a distance of 1000m away to the beach and sheltered via adjacent trees.

 

Concept

The concept was to extrude the existing living space out and into the garden.  This alignment took the form of a new axis at right-angles to the original house, a narrow, glazed single-storey addition that faced South and West and allowed for a more efficient use of space and corresponded to the constraints of the Lot dimensions. The concept to connect the pool with the living spaces arrived at a large South-facing glazed opening terminating in a framed view to the pool and garden beyond.  The picture frame window also serves as outside/inside window seats.

The existing front door to the original house was relocated to create a clear, legible link connecting the front and back of the building. The picture frame extends across this alfresco to enclose the opening, as an extended piece of structure that terminates in the key view to the pool. The kitchen became a linear space separating the old house with the living/ dining areas and opening out into the alfresco entertainment and barbeque area.

The exterior and interior of the house was carefully refurbished to reinstate the modernist dwelling, respectfully retaining the integrity of the old house.  The transition between existing and new surfaces was controlled – polished concrete of the addition meets with Jarrah floorboards abutting along a simple steel edge.