Cox Architecture believe that this project, Lansdowne Residence, deals with typical Brisbane things. A growing family, an existing Queenslander, a very steep slope and a modest budget.
The family had lived on site for ten years and started a family that now included four children. The house was an assemblage of the highset Queenslander on the low side of the site, meshed with a very ordinary box like addition on the high side of the site, a full level above the Queenslander. The kitchen and living was located in the Queenslander. There was no clear hierarchy of space nor generous gathering space for the family. However staying and renovating was not a clear choice.
The compelling opportunity was the elevated position looking south to the city around to Mt Coot-tha and beyond to the ranges south of the border.
The scheme proposed to move the kitchen and living space to the upper level with the main bedroom and locate all children’s bedrooms, bathroom, laundry and children’s communal space in the Queenslander. The floor and substructure of the addition were retained with all new work above floor level.
The upper level was composed as a linear with kitchen, living/ dining space extending into a garden courtyard looking south to the city. The main bedroom was located directly adjacent the living space with a series of solid pivoting panels allowing a direct engagement between the bedroom and the views to the south beyond the living space. ?The end of the living space is resolved as a double height outdoor room adjacent the garden courtyard. The courtyard is cut further into the hill to extend a flat gathering zone and the retention walls include seating opportunities. An external fireplace provides a focus for the courtyard and a device for separating the neighbouring dwelling which is overscaled and dominant on the northern boundary.
The pool is a new essential element at the level of the living space and elevated above the adjacent falling ground.
The connection of the house to the pool and the views beyond remind of the famous Californian mid century modernist arrangements and why they are so effective.
Photos – Christopher Frederick Jones