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   -   The RAIA Award for Small Project Architecture (NT)

Lindsay Avenue Studio
by Stephen Lumb Architect



The aim of the project was to design an extension to a family home to support a variety of uses in such a way that it enhanced and took advantage of opportunities offered by an established garden. The key strategy was to place the extension on the most degraded part of the site in order to improve the overall qualities of the existing garden and house. The project offered the opportunity to work with timber and included using sustainably harvested and sourced timbers both for their aesthetic and structural possibilities. The extension is sited on the eastern boundary looking back towards the original house to maximize the potential of the garden's existing shade and space. A simple floor plan was developed that accommodates multiple uses to meet the changing needs of life i.e. a loose fit long life solution. The garden and relationship to the existing house form the significant context of the extension. The siting of the new extension separate from the main house: establishes the garden as the main social and public space on the site creates a conversation between the existing house and the new extension allows the new extension to take advantage of shade offered by the existing garden and trees to the east and west allows opportunities for framing views to the existing garden The new extension was required to support a number of uses including office / studio, writing room, guest room and self contained flat. A simple plan was developed consisting of a large space approximately 10.5m x 4.0m divisible into two rooms via an operable wall. A service zone 1.5m wide located hard on the eastern

boundary (space usually lost to boundary set backs) provides bathroom, kitchenette and storage accessed from the main spaces. Pulling the main spaces back off the boundary to create the service zone enabled high level windows located on the east to be incorporated into the design. These windows assist the night time cooling of the building using operable louvers. In the context of building in Alice Springs where all building products except concrete blocks are made elsewhere and imported the construction cost was very reasonable for a small building. Key factors contributing to the cost effectiveness of the building include: importing all the timber directly from interstate suppliers using conventional steel framed wall construction using slab on ground construction The new extension seeks to minimize impact on the environment through a number of strategies: siting the new extension on the eastern boundary so that existing shade trees provide morning and afternoon shade to the east and west walls incorporating thermal mass into the fabric to stabalise the room temperature, including the floor via concrete slab; and internal walls with a reverse veneer construction, to keep the thermal mass wall cool large window openings to the north allow direct sunlight to fall on the concrete slab in winter eaves overhangs restrict direct sun entering the building in summer and the shoulder seasons plantation Australian hardwoods and recycled timbers used for the roof framing, windows and doors, plantation hoop pine plywood for joinery AAAA water conserving fixtures

Alice Springs, NT
Stephen Lumb Architect
Contact address:
Stephen Lumb Architect
Project Team
Project architect: Stephen Lumb
Design architect: Stephen Lumb
Structural consultant: NJA Consultants
Builder: Earthen Construction Pty Ltd

Photographs by Stephen Lumb Architect, text by Stephen Lumb Architect

Link directly to this award entry: is the website of The Royal Australian Institute of Architects