Comprised as a single mass, carved and shaped to permit a maximum infiltration of natural light, The Light House is an architectural reaction to our clients' pre-existing home on the site. Previously home to a 1940's two storey cottage style house, the existing home was dark and provided a heavy segregation of space. As a reaction to how they have been living, we worked with our clients to create an appropriate response - one that responds to the desire for light; but conversely one that needed to respond to a mitigation of contextual sound. Formed of an initial basic masonry mass, the house was shaped from the interior out, providing for enough acoustic mass at key elevations while ensuring adequate openings for natural light and ventilation. An oversized void was created to the south east corner of the plan in an attempt to provide a full height light filled atrium which subsequently became home to the lightly composed steel and timber stair. An oversized exterior light well was placed next to this internal void to create an external opportunity for natural light and ventilation to the basement level, creating a more contiguous and considered space. To the south, the plan is compressed and elongated - pulling the sleeping quarters away from the adjacent street and providing a solid composition of masonry to help attenuate the associated sound. With no openings or articulation on this wall, the masonry was peeled back and expressed as a stone skin - curving to meet the 90 degree formal shift and providing a unique point of visual interest.
The living spaces of the home are conceived of as a singular entity that can be dynamically conditioned for whatever use is necessary. A formal dining space was foregone completely to provide a large central island which, at twenty two feet, has the size and power to become a dining table, hutch, or conversational centre. A more formal living room is placed to the north, separated from the entry. In an effort to maintain the clean and visual porosity, tertiary amenity such as a powder room or a bar cabinet are discreetly hid within the blocks of custom cabinetry. A hidden door to the powder room can be released from the block of entry closets to unveil a small but considered room wrapped in a custom mural by the digital art group eBoy. Large punctures in the exterior form create expansive opportunities for glazing, connecting the home back to the context and providing articulation and points of connection to the front and rear gardens, culminating in a soft and considered urban edge.