Text description provided by the architects. The owners of Carlton terrace asked for a break from the past. They looked forward to new spaces filled with natural light, all year round living, and the ability to connect visually with their surrounds. The local street character reveals rows of terrace houses, snug tightly alongside each other. Properties are narrow in width and short in depth. With the standard kitchen, dining and living space requirements, together with an ambitious 4 bedrooms and 2 x bathrooms, the challenge of going “up a level” and addressing the overlooking and overshadowing of neighbors cannot be underestimated.
For Carlton Terrace, we set out to explore contrasts in volume and texture.
Our approach was to first create a light and airy, open ground floor plane, with a bold volume above. At ground level, we outline a continuous space from the kitchen to a “green wall” externally. With the space being visually continuous inside and out, each side of the façade benefits from connection to the other. In contrast, the upper-level form is created from the want for appropriate space requirements, rubbing up against the need for sunlight into the north facing windows of the adjacent property to the south.
The monolithic, upper-level form is articulated with a fine patterning of neatly seamed flat locked panels. Contrast this with the delicate, but sharp, screen elements pinned off the façade by a neat gap. Internally, the main space is accentuated with ribbed walls on one side, and a smooth Venetian render, inside and out, on the other.
Without resorting to frosted glass and a sill height above 1700mm, a large upper-level window dominates the rear façade. The screen to the window serves the functional requirement of allowing long and short range views from inside the main bedroom and adds a lightness externally. The screen is made from a galvanized ladder frame, clad with single dot perforated flat plate aluminum. The aluminum is held off the main façade to add to the lightness to the otherwise heavy volume.
In the wet area, the owners wanted a robust, yet restrained palette. Long lasting and natural in tone. The extensive use of long sheet porcelain for the splashback, benchtops, TV unit and outside bench reveal and versatile material quick to blend in with its context. Internally, polished concrete floors and porcelain tiles wrap up the robust and low maintenance palette.