Bow House

Bow house lies on a residential street in Richmond, Melbourne to what was previously a single storey brick cottage.

The rectangular shaped block fronts Coppin Street to the west and is bound by houses each side. The northern boundary is abutted by a 2 storey wall which runs the length of the site.

The brief, a modest 3 bedroom family house for an active young family ,providing them with increased living and kitchen spaces, connectivity and maximising available natural light.

The form of the house responds to its rectilinear orientation by maximising the path of the sun and creating an internal, private aspect for its habitants. The house bows in both plan and section, maximising available sunlight to the courtyard garden and defining a double storey street frontage which creates intimacy to the two upper bedrooms. A full-width glazed rooflight captures morning sun on the upper level landing and bathroom.To the rear, the double height volume above the living area acts as culmination in transition from the street to the privacy of the garden oasis.

The location of the services and fixed elements along the spine wall to the north allow the external walls to be fully activated in response to the various micro landscapes. The use of internal operable walls and multi-functional joinery elements create flexibility for the plan to grow and adapt to the changing needs of the family within it.

Vertical timber lining runs both externally and internally to blur thresholds between interior and exterior, adding warmth and tactility. Internally, hyrdronic heated flooring provides thermal comfort with the concrete floor extending outwards to provide outdoor dining area and create expanse to the interior. The bow form roof, visible from the garden is finished in low profile radiating zinc.


Photographer: Fraser Marsden