Recognition: Winner 2015 HIA NSW Region Renovation / Addition Project
Joint Winner, 2015 Master Builders Association Excellence in Housing
Finalist 2015 HIA NSW Region Renovation / Addition Project
Architect: Development Design
Year Completed: 2014
Project overview: Taking restoration to a whole new level, this old Victorian was painstakingly renovated to its former glory for its owner, while a thoroughly modern extension was added on to give her daughter and family a place to call home.
It was a brave decision to buy the circa 1890’s home to begin with. It had extensive fire damage throughout and it been over seven years since anyone had set foot in this run down diamond in the rough.
Aside from the front facade, which showed promise, the rest of the home had well and truly seen better days. Not to mention the grounds of the 700sq m plus block, which was overgrown with vegetation.
The rear and side walls were dramatically effected by some of the gigantic root systems of the majority of the trees , showing extensive cracking from the footings up .It didn’t help that the home and its grounds had not seen sunlight for over 10 years , hence keeping the soil damp and allowing the footings to continually settle.
It looked unsightly and unloved, but the owner along with our staff had a vision to turn the neglected abode into the pride of the street. We took on the major renovation keen to see the home restored, although in earnest, most would have thought it a feasible exercise in demolition considering the extensive fire damage throughout. Due to the history of the home that wasn’t possible and this resulted in an amazing restoration, one which we are extremely proud of.
This family was looking for a place to redevelop that would allow for separate Living quarters. They wanted to have privacy but some communal areas to make it comfortable for everyone to come together to relax.
This home came about because of the mother’s vision. She loves the Victorian style and she now lives in the front part of the restored home, which also has an ensuite complete with a cast iron tub made in 1895 that was found on-site), living area , library , walk in robe and a contemporary glass link connecting the new addition .
The fire had pretty much ravaged the heritage features of the property, with the ornate ceilings, architraves , skirting boards, archways and timber floorboards replaced to mimic the period. it wasn’t just the fire damage that was problematic, The external walls were cracking from the pressure of the vegetation building up around them, requiring us to underpin the structure and place stainless steel reinforcement bars that where epoxied, bridging every single cracked mortar joint.
Around 20 trees had to be removed from the site to make way from the addition and a huge amount of undergrowth. Once all the trees and vegetation were removed we were still hitting roots whilst excavating. We removed close to 13 truck and trailer loads of undergrowth and roots, which is about 260 cubic metres . It was a real problem; it took us four days to excavate the pool when it should have taken half a day.
The original home also had a metal roof lean-to out the back, which was demolished to make way for the modern extension that now houses the extended family. This section of
the home features another five bedrooms. After a ten month overhaul, the property now has six bedrooms, three living spaces, a library, attic and alfresco with pool. Four cars can also park in the tandem driveway
They said that the owner was crazy, but she had a vision, though, I think this is even beyond what she could have envisioned with the contemporary addition.
Special features of the new addition include blackbutt flooring and stairs which run along a natural sandstone 3.3m wall, oversized doors backing on to the pool and New York marble in the bathrooms .Polished concrete floors and cavity stack sliders making the transition outside seamless and transforms the dining room into and outdoor space that’s surrounded by lush greenery. Every details has been taken care of, including the dining table, which was custom made.
Such care was taken that plasterers took three weeks to put up the ornate panelled plaster ceilings in the original portion of the house. The joints were moulded and connected by plaster which took 2 weeks on its own to create.
Outside, the front cast iron picket fence was deconstructed from its dismal and frail state, reconstructed in a new form with a modern electric gate added and painted in a Ferrodor protective coating. Due to the gate and missing panel new spear heads from a foundry in wagga needed to be ordered to match the existing ones and complete the seamless construction of this very important item.
All the windows were changed like for like and period tessellated tile has been laid at the entrance of the home to be respectful of its original era, with all 300 individual pieces laid in its respective pattern .
Standing in the driveway of this home, the two distinct eras, where old meets new, does stand out, but the architecture works. The front does not take anything away from the addition at the back vice versus.
The addition looks like a floating piece of joinery, it’s just proportionally perfect and not too over bearing. It’s the perfect balance, especially at night when the lights are on, the box looks amazing.
The gardens have been landscaped to introduce new vegetation and foliage to the block, where we had once sweated and heaved to rid it of overgrown weeds.
This home now stands proud once again basking in its former glory, with a fresh, modern extension, it is well and truly a project we are all immensely proud to present.
This project has been such a success that it has had the likes of Harvey Norman, Telstra and Empire Movie productions use the home as a back drop for catalogues, TV commercials and upcoming movies .
Micrah Projects Team
The attention to detail and diligence in the work was exceptional.
They achieve these kind of results in no time.
There is a reason they have so many awards. From the finishes to the structure. Everything was perfect!