Glass Loggia House: New South Wales Residence, Glebe Property

Glebe Property, Sydney House, New South Wales Home, Photo, Design, NSW Home

Glass Loggia House, Australia : Sydney Residence

Australian Residence, NSW – design by Allen Jack+Cottier Architects

Glass Loggia House

Architect: Allen Jack+Cottier Architects

Location: Glebe, Sydney, NSW, Australia

Glass Loggia House Glass Loggia House Glebe Glebe House Glebe Property
photographs : Nic Bailey

The site is occupied by a grand two storey High Victorian style residence circa 1870. Whilst the house is not listed in any heritage registers, Heritage Council documents state that it ‘appears to be the work of architect Ferdinand Reuss who constructed many High Victorian Residences in Glebe, including ‘Hamilton’ and ‘Reussdale’ on the same road.

The project gestated over a number of years, starting in 2002 with the construction of a new polished concrete swimming pool and the ongoing design of the front and rear gardens by Terragram, landscape architects. Originally a private zoo in the 1930’s, Terragram’s ‘Garden of Ghosts’ retained and reused remnants of existing sheds, and used a vitrine containing a fish skeleton and a plant filled moat as a pool fence. It is is a seasonal ‘chameleon’ with canopies of flowering wisteria, walls of rampant ivy and pyrostegia, and spontaneous emergence of tiny figs in cracks and crevices.

By 2006, quirky additions and layers added over time had created a rich and magical context in which we were asked to provide an additional dining area and bedroom with ensuite to the house. We were also tasked with solving the problem of a lack of winter light in the formal living space, caused by an existing ’lean to’ verandah structure. We conceived a double volume glass loggia that would be sheltered from the hot western sun by an existing cypress stand, to create an outdoor room in a way that acknowledges and accentuates the grand scale of the existing building, and is appropriate to the existing conservation area.

Glass Loggia House Glass Loggia House Glebe Glebe House Glebe Property

The loggia and new rooms are designed to explore and exploit the ambiguities between what is inside and what is outside. The loggia has the feel of a surreal garden element, creating an atmospheric space for contemplation, children’s play and entertaining guests.

Both the new dining room and the master bedroom have corner sliding doors to dematerialise the sense of internal space. A stainless steel mesh curtain shading the whole northwest façade operates to transform the spatial qualities of the garden for different family functions, and changes the perception of the new and old adjoining spaces. Despite the fact that the building is not a heritage item, it was constructed in the late nineteenth and together with its mature and eclectic Victorian gardens, is a contributory site in the Glebe Conservation Area.

The design recognises the building’s heritage by:

• Demolishing non original building fabric that detracted from the appearance of the building

• Creating a transparent addition that is sympathetic to the scale and form of the principal building and constrains all of the new fabric beneath the eaves line of the principal roof.

• Adopting robust contemporary detailing using lightweight metal and glass materials in contrast to the existing visual character of the principal building;

• Minimal physical impact on the existing fabric of the house and new works enable the rules of reversibility to apply.

Glass Loggia Home Glebe residence

The primary bioclimatic design action was the re- introduction of natural daylight into previously dark and cold living spaces. Potential heat build-up under the glass roof is controlled by extensive natural shading from the west created by the existing stand of cypress. The use of low ‘e’ toughened glazing that is elevated and open on three sides allows the convective heat build-up to readily escape before affecting users below. The building complies with BASIX commitments.

Glass Loggia Houseimages / information from FD


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Glass Loggia House