Situated in Brunswick, this delightful modern home invites in light, fresh air as well as views to multiple greenered courtyards. Melbourne-based architects Drawing Room Architecture brought the renovation and extension of this Victorian Terrace to a completion in 2020. The design practices sustainable living and makes a perfect home for the young working family.
The area is known as a family friendly suburb with a great music and art scene next to many eco-friendly restaurants, cafes, bars and shops. “The Brunswick Green house is also an example of a highly sustainable outcome in an inner urban area in Brunswick. The home has disconnected the gas, is all electric & re-uses all of its rain water in veggie beds, the laundry and for toilet flushing.”
Instead of gas, hot water is now generated through an electric heat pump, an induction cooktop in the kitchen and heating provided by split systems. Other eco-friendly systems include water collected from the roof for the garden, laundry and the toilets. For electricity, solar panels have been installed along the new roof.
The site, which spans over approximately 300m2 in total, proved to be the main challenge of the project. “As a compact workers cottage that was built to both boundaries with one of those being a party wall running the length of the house, space was limited,” the architects explain.
The original design was cramped which made the home feel cold and dark. The owners had already inhabited the house for some years before reaching out with their wish to extend the home with an extra bedroom, a study for two, extra storage as well as a master bedroom with ensuite. What felt cramped is now light, bright, cosy and the use of space is highly efficient.
According to the architects, very compact space planning was the solution to the briefing. New courtyards were created to allow natural light to flow through the spaces and a skylight over the staircase as well as angled windows helped achieve daylight to reach otherwise completely darkened areas.
“Some of the rooms needed to be smaller than we had designed those rooms to be previously; kitchen, dining, laundry, bathroom, laundry and it wasn’t until it was built that we were relieved to see those rooms working and not feeling or being too small.”
The selection of light, natural materials and details were chosen to carry a calm and open air throughout the interior spaces. “Asparagus Green, a dulux colour, was used as the only colour throughout, on all sliding doors and on the kitchen pantry joinery.”