Revamping an Edwardian house in Melbourne with reversed vaults and bricks

Studio Bright's brick extension of an Edwardian house presents multifunctional spaces and many details engaging with the neighborhood.

In Melbourne, Studio Bright responded to the difficult task of designing the extension of an Edwardian-style house, right after restoring the original building.

The architects first and decisive design choice for the Ruckers Hill House was to fit it at the bottom of the lot, thus giving the new building its own autonomy. The old and new structure are connected by a covered passage that divides the central garden into two parts: a green garden that opens directly onto the living room and an elongated swimming pool.

“The backyard pool is reimagined and sequestered in a room-like space recalling a colonnaded Roman bath. The backyard is then free from the usual pool fence requirements and the activated upturned arches are better for sitting in and for playing,” the architects explain.

Studio Bright, Ruckers Hill House, Malbourne, 2019

The interior spaces are designed to be used in different ways: with a heavy green curtain, part of the living area is transformed into a small music room, while upstairs two multipurpose rooms house a lounge, a study and a guest room.

Despite the contemporary language, there are many elements and details that link the new building with the history of the neighborhood. For example, its rippled concrete surface is formed by the corrugated sheet metal of the adjacent garages. “New layers of occupation join the old, going forward but with the hope of moving together with a renewed reverence for the past,” say Studio Bright.

Ruckers Hill House
Northcote, Melbourne, Australia
single family house extension
Studio Bright
Robert McIntyre, Todd de Hoog, Emily Watson, Pei She Lee, Maia Close
4AD Constructions
tnla, MJR Landscape
Structural Engineering:
Meyer Consulting

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