The initial brief was for a funky, creative, and different family home that made the best use of the vacant block and provided enough indoor/outdoor living for an active family.
The result is a colourful and contemporary home divided into three zones—one for Emma and Louis, one for the boys, and a central zone where the family can come together. The three pavilions enclose a north-facing yard, which is visible from the expanse of glass in the dining/living zone.
The major challenge was the desire for a spacious, adaptable family home with a connection to sunny outdoor living on a compact site where the traditional ‘backyard’ was facing south.
The solution was for the building to hug the southern and side boundaries as closely as possible given setback requirements and a rear easement. By wrapping three pavilions around the rear of the block we created a usable north-facing front yard that flows from the central living area.
"I just love it because it is a house that has an impact. Even though the site and footprint are small, it feels deceptively big. I also love how the clients embrace and use the house—it really shows what a good partnership between architect and client can create."
— Jane Macrae
"It is such a pleasure to live in, and the house is designed to continue to meet our family’s needs as our kids grow older."
— Emma & Louis
Inside, adaptable spaces were prioritized over circulation, and there is only one hallway in the home—a space in the boys’ pavilion that doubles as both a laundry and storage area.
This pavilion features a second living room that can be adapted as a study, guest quarters, or rumpus room; and the boys’ bedrooms have loft beds to allow for play spaces below. Although the footprint is small, all ceiling heights are over 10 feet, making the house feel more spacious.