Category : Contemporary/Sustainable development
Client : Personal residence
Location : Oatley, Sydney
Description : The house was designed in 1991 by specialist conservation architect Clive Lucas of Clive Lucas, Stapleton and Partners and building was completed in 1995. It is a reproduction Georgian colonial homestead and is constructed of Hebel concrete blocks with a corrugated iron roof. 

Key challenges : The main challenge we faced was designing a structure to suit the site, which contained a steep cliff face, a natural water course and dense noxious flora such as lantana and privet. Major excavations were undertaken to situate the ground level of the house in rock. The water course was diverted to a newly installed 900mm concrete storm water system and the site was cleared while maintaining native flora species, including two large gum trees. All excavated materials were recycled and reused on site, including the rock removed from the cliff face which was reused for groundworks, paving and garden walls. Environmental concerns were considered in the architect's plans, including forethought on the lighting, heating, cooling and cross ventilation aspects of the design. The house was designed and built with four light-wells at the ground level to give additional natural light to this floor. All external and ground floor internal walls were constructed using autoclaved aerated concrete blocks which hold high thermal mass properties, retaining internal heating during cool weather and blocking out the heat of the summer sun. To complement this, traditional Louvre shutters were installed to each window providing protection from bright sunlight and allowing cross ventilation. 

All joinery was produced at our joinery factory and made to precise design specifications. A number of these were one-off, period style, unique pieces, including; a free-standing geometric staircase of polished red cedar with a hand-carved continuous handrail, splayed reveal French doors, six-panel red cedar mortise and tenon jointed doors throughout the house, as well as a spider web arched Georgian style front door, all receiving a traditional shellac and beeswax finish. Much of the timber used for these had been salvaged from previous projects and re-milled. 

Completed : 1995