East Fremantle House, Perth Building Project, Western Australia Modern Real Estate, Architecture Photos

East Fremantle House in Perth

25 Mar 2021

East Fremantle House

Architect: NIC BRUNSDON

Location: Perth, Western Australia

East Fremantle House Perth

The East Fremantle House is a contextually responsive addition to a heritage cottage in suburban Perth.

East Fremantle House Perth

The most important part of this house is the space that is not built – specifically, a large northern void – a space for sun, light, sky, sound, and breeze to inhabit. The house then traces this edge, creating rooms with immediate connection to these elemental conditions.

East Fremantle House Perth

On the northern face of the addition, the form is simple and linear, allowing the southern mass of the building to be an efficient living space conceptualised as one long ‘garden room’. The northern face of these spaces is lined with sliding doors, allowing the whole space to open up and allow the life of the house to spill out and occupy the full width of the site.

East Fremantle House Perth

On the southern face, the ancillary program elements are expressed as ‘lumps’; a tall triangular chimney for the fireplace, a curved north facing shell for an art wall, a low top-lit box for the kitchen, and a high round cylinder for a powder room.

East Fremantle House Perth

Formally, the house is expressed in four parts; the existing brick cottage, an entry link, the ground floor addition, and the first floor addition. The entry link acts as a mediating point, the connective tissue between the elements. Dark, hard and solemn. To the left upon entry is the existing cottage, restored and lightly amended. To the right, the garden room and living spaces which are, light, bright, and open, experientially a direct counter to the experience of the house upon entry. Above these sits the articulated eaves and master suite, a wooden box perched lightly.

East Fremantle House Perth

The ground floor addition is masonry construction, either painted or bagged brick, or rough thrown concrete, all painted white. This floor then hits a very deliberate and expressed datum line above which the project becomes light framed natural timbers. There are two points where this hard datum threshold is broken; once on the southern elevation where the counter ‘lumps’ break through to varying heights, and again in the sunken lounge room where the first-floor stair flicks a timber hatch down to welcome and gently touch the heavy base of the ground floor program.

East Fremantle House Perth East Fremantle House Perth

This practice’s view of sustainability is that it is best done as a first principles thing and not an applied technology. Getting the massing, orientation and subsequent program planning right is the most important thing we can do as designers of lived-in environments. More so than ever in our current context of shifting work patterns towards the home.

East Fremantle House Perth East Fremantle House Perth

This project demonstrates that by placing the northern garden as the first design move on site. The building then becomes secondary and deferential to this. The garden, this void of space, gives measurable and appreciable amenity to the project and shows that an understanding of and connection to our celestial sphere can shape the rhythms, patterns, and quality of daily family life.

East Fremantle House Perth East Fremantle House Perth

What was the brief?
This project demonstrates that by placing the northern garden as the first design move on site, the building then becomes secondary and deferential to this. The garden, this void of space, gives measurable and appreciable amenity to the project and shows that an understanding of and connection to our celestial sphere can shape the rhythms, patterns, and quality of daily family life.

East Fremantle House Perth

On the southern face, the ancillary program elements are expressed as ‘lumps’ pushing through the purity of the north-facing living box to create a tall triangular chimney for the fireplace, a curved north-facing shell for an art wall, a low top-lit box for the kitchen, and a high round cylinder for a powder room.

East Fremantle House Perth

How is the project unique?
The clients brief was for a contextually sensitive addition that gave functional living space to a cherished existing cottage.

The house then imbues this program with the high-performance elements of sustainable space planning, addressing thermal mass, winter sun angles, and prevailing breezes.

East Fremantle House Perth

The house also allows for changing patterns of family life. Currently, the family is all living in the front of the house due to a recent birth. Over time, the parents or children may choose to retreat to the rear upper floor bedroom suite at the rear.

The resulting house is breathable, functional, and responsive to the stages of life.

East Fremantle House Perth

What were the solutions?
Formally, the house is expressed in four parts; the existing brick cottage, an entry link, the ground floor addition, and the first floor addition. The entry link acts as a mediating point, the connective tissue between the elements.

To the left upon entry is the existing cottage, restored and lightly amended. To the right, the garden room and living spaces which are, light, bright, and open, experientially a direct counter to the experience of the house upon entry. Above these sits the articulated eaves and master suite, a wooden box perched lightly.

East Fremantle House Perth East Fremantle House Perth

This project invites a bond between the inhabitants and the space beyond the built.
On the northern face of the addition, the form is simple and linear, allowing the southern mass of the building to be an efficient living space conceptualised as one long ‘garden room’. The northern face of these spaces is lined with sliding doors, allowing the whole space to open up and allow the life of the house to spill out and occupy the full width of the site.

East Fremantle House Perth East Fremantle House Perth

East Fremantle House in Perth, Western Australia – Building Information

Architecture, Interior Design & Furniture selection: NIC BRUNSDON

Project size: 230 sqm
Site size: 550 sqm
Project Budget: $750000
Completion date: 2020
Building levels: 2

East Fremantle House Perth East Fremantle House Perth

Photography © Dion Robeson

East Fremantle House in Perth images / information received 250321

Location: Perth, Western Australia

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