This is one of those fine examples of gorgeous neighbourhood architecture, that makes you think of how will your dream house look like. Simple, yet playful, the Glenbervie House, by Darren Carnell Architects emphasises the constant human need to connect with the environment. Located in a quiet neighbourhood in Melbourne, this residential project links the indoor to the outdoor, through a refined and luscious marble deck. There are two separate entrances: a regular front door and the open plan living room. Neat and transparent, the Glenbervie House is ideal for those who seek a particular type of experience, embracing both the natural environment and luxury.
The back of the house accommodates a lounge area and the terrace – connected to the living room’s extension. Due to the fact that the living room is guarded only by two solid walls, an incredible fluid circulation is created between the two environments. The idea was to eliminate boundaries and create a space that allows a proper air ventilation throughout the house. The all-the-same floors (the white marble) underline the lack of boundaries. The rooms are also interconnected. Everything floats and suggests freedom and breeziness. Do you find this project interesting? How do you feel about the special connection between the inhabitable place and nature?
What is new and exciting now can quickly begin to look tired and out of fashion, so the best buildings don’t just consider what will be interesting to look at now, but also how it might look to people in five, fifty or even a hundred years’ time. 2013’s hotly contested RIBA Stirling Prize went to Witherford Watson Mann Architects for their work on Astley Castle, Warwickshire. In what RIBA Past President Stephen Hodder has described as an extreme retrofit, the project essentially saw a new building inserted subtly into the heart of the old, with a new, two storey residence now hidden within the sandstone walls of the ruins of this medieval castle, to be used as a holiday home for up to eight guests
Energy during the construction process was saved by using FSC-certified glulam timber instead of steel to create the building’s distinctive wavy roof, while the store’s external walls use hemclad, a highly innovative insulator made from hemp, which, like all plants, absorbs CO2 from the atmosphere as it grows. An 80,000 litre water tank below ground provides water for the store’s toilets and waters the site’s green wall’, which provides natural insulation, acts as an all-natural pollution filter near the car park, and helps to encourage biodiversity. The result is a building that uses a fraction of the energy of structures of a similar size, and is still very popular with local shoppers.