James Corbett Architects, 11 The Crescent, O'Connell Street, Limerick, Ireland / T +353 (0)61 319080 / info@jcarchitects.ie / © 2018 by James Corbett Architects

Location: Co.Galway

Type: Extension and renovation

Status: Completed 2011

 

OLD HOUSE NEW HOUSE

THE SITE FOR THIS NEW SUSTAINABLE PRIAVTE RESIDENCE IS LOCATED ON THE BANKS OF THE MULCAIR RIVER.  THE SIMPLE VERNACULAR FORM OF THIS PRIVATE RESIDENCE IS INTENDED TO SIT UNOBTRUSIVELY WITHIN THE CONTEXT OF THE EXISTING RIBBON HOUSING DEVELOPMENT IN THE VICINITY OF ANNACOTTY, CO.LIMERICK.

THE EXISITNG RURAL 1920'S HOUSE WAS ORIGINALLY DESIGNED FOR A PARISH PRIEST, BUT WAS NEVER INHABITED.  THE PLANS SHOW THIS DESIGN INTENTION QUITE CLEARLY AS THE SIZE AND THE LAYOUT OF THE HOUSE WAS INTENDED FOR A SINGLE PERSON AND DOES NOT SUPPORT FAMILY LIVING. THE VERY FINE EXTERNAL DETAILING AND MATERIALS USED REFLECT THE SOCIAL STATUS OF THE PRIEST AS CLIENT.  THE CURRENT OWNERS AND CLIENTS APPROACHED US TO EFFECTIVELY CREATE A FAMILY HOME FOR THEM WITHIN THIS HOUSE.

OUR FIRST MOVE WAS TO DESIGN A SEPERATE ELEMENT THAT WILL PLUG INTO THE EXSITING HOUSE THIS ELEMENT WILL CONATIN THE HEART OF THE FAMILY HOME, WHICH WAS MISSING FROM THE ORIGINAL STRUCTURE. THE PRESENT OUTHOUSES WILL CONTAIN NEW TIMBER STRUCTURES TO HOUSE GUEST ACCOMMODATION AND MUSIC ROOMS.  THIS MOVE ENHANCES THE COURTYARD AS HABITABLE EXTERNAL SPACE AND REFLECTS THE ORIGINAL INTENDED USE OF THE HOUSE AS A HOME FOR THE RELIGIOUS BY SUGGESTING THE FORM OF A CLOISTER. WE WANT TO RESPECT THE EXISTING HOUSE, REFURBISHING IT BUT MAKING NO STRUCTURAL MODIFICATIONS; ALL OTHER STRUCTURAL INTERVENTIONS ON THE SITE SUPPORT AND ENHANCE THE HOUSE AS THE PRIMARY FOCUS.

WE CHOSE TO DESIGN THE NEW EXTENSION AS SOMETHING VERY DIFFERENT FROM THE ORIGINAL HOUSE, SO AS NOT TO REPLICATE OR IMITATE THE ORIGINAL FORM, AND THEREBY MAKING IT LESS THAN IT IS.  THE CLADDING IS IN TIMBER THAT WILL WEATHER TO GREY AND FADE INTO THE BACKGROUND.  THE EXAGGERATED TIMBER PITCHED ROOF OF THE NEW BUILDING IS ONE ELEMENT OF THE RHYTHM OF PITCHED ROOFS EXPERIENCED WITHIN THE COURTYARD ALLOWING THE NEW TO SIT COMFORTABLY WITH THE OLD.  THE LAYOUT MAXIMISES SUNLIGHT PENETRATION AND FOCUSSES THE INTERNAL SPACES ON THE GARDENS AND COURTYARDS ON THE SITE.