Orientation is the number one thing that can transform a home, making it feel lighter, more spacious and more comfortable. By facing living areas to the North (if you're in the Southern Hemisphere), you can bring bring, warming sun into the home in winter and a simple awning or eve can block out the hot afternoon sun. Bring light into the right parts of the home at the right time of year. But what happens when your existing house is on a narrow block of land that runs East-West? How do you bring the sun in then? Philip Stejskal Architecture have come up with an ingenious solution at this Fremantle alteration and addition - light funnels...
The project transforms a 100 year old duplex from a three bedroom, one bathroom into a four bedroom, two bathroom. But more importantly, the renovation grabs North light from a series of towers which face the sun and bounce light into the living areas - light funnels. The funnels also multitask by helping to ventilate the house in summer.
A series of adjustable blades in the living area - a defining feature in Philip Stejskal's projects, is an effective way to moderate views and light and to catch breezes. The blades add a dynamic component to the living area, changing to meet the owner's needs.
A central courtyard is another gesture that brings light into the home, creating a North-facing garden space the living areas can spill into. A window seat and large bifold doors help to make the indoor/outdoor transition seamless.
The project also negotiates as 1.5 metre level change across the site, so a split level corridor which runs the length of house helps to deal with the level change. Externally brick terracing is used to deal with the level change. Both the stair and the terraces create informal seating areas for the home,
The exiting home was also updated to bring it in line with the new addition. New joinery units and built in furniture make the original spaces more functional and help the home to feel more connected.
South Terrace Alterations and Additions is a stunning example of how a clever concept can help a home to defy its constraints. Thanks to the ingenious light funnels, this home feels bright and airy, but also, functionally, feels more comfortable year-round.