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11m2 Extension to Victorian House

  • Architect:
    Hassett Ducatez Architects
  • Award Type:
    Regional Award 2001
  • Location: Dublin
11m2 Extension to Victorian House


Dublin (under £100,000)

An ingenious answer to the common city problem of restricted areacreating and extra room while maintaining external space. 

Architects Comments

This city centre neighbourhood is formed of red brick Victorian terraced houses. Varied plot sizes result in an arrangement of lances, gardens and yards with different dimensions. A family with three children, who wished to remain living in the neighbourhood needed more space. An extension of eleven square metres was made at the rear of the house. The result is a cubic volume of 76 m 2 over two levels. 

The internal footprint of the extension at ground floor level becomes a new family room. Its floor and walls continue outside to enclose a tiny courtyard. The roof of the extension becomes a terrace, facing the sun at south and west, thereby releasing the potential of the rooms on the first floor of the house.   Connections are made between the parts of the house. At ground level the family room and the courtyard are linked through a large clear glass screen which pivots open in good weather. An incision is made in the ceiling of the family room to draw light into an inner sitting room from the roof terrace. At fist floor level a large opening is made in the flank wall of the small playroom at the top of the stairs allowing its space to extend onto the roof terrace. The window of the master bedroom overlooks the external space.

The relationship between the external spaces and their context is amplified. Views of neighbours yards and sheds are veiled at ground level by the walls of the courtyard. The rear wall drops slightly to allow the eye to extend to the view of a cherry tree in the distance and to admit sunlight. On the first floor terrace opal glass walls act as a windbreak and maintain privacy. Views of chimney pots and slate roofs are framed.

Construction details maintain these edges. The limestone floor in the family room is carried in to the courtyard on grade, continuing upwards against the rear wall of the courtyard to make a raised pot plant ledge with a store for bicycles and bins below. Utilities and rainwater are concealed below the floor at the courtyard. Steel frames and clear or opal glass are given dimensions to admit maximum light at junctions. On the roof terrace the floor is timber. The opal walls hold the light. Small gaps between each glass sheet in its walls dissipate wind forces and connect the scale the new extension to the domestic scale of the house.