House in Southlands – Vancouver Residence

Southlands House, Vancouver Home, New Canadian Property, Design, Image

House in Southlands, Vancouver

New Vancouver Real Estate, BC – design by DIALOG

23 Aug 2013

Residence in Southlands

Location: Southlands, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Architect: DIALOG

Residence in Southlands

House in Southlands
photograph : Kristopher Grunert

The Southlands Residence nestles into a mature, heavily vegetated corner site in Vancouver’s historical Dunbar-Southlands neighborhood. A year-round fresh water stream divides the irregularly shaped property as it threads its way below Marine Drive to the south. The lush basin resulting from long-standing environmental forces sets the stage for a dramatic and highly contextual architectural response. The Southlands Residence spans the riparian environment and sets up a circulation sequence that culminates in a grand south facing outdoor ‘room’ on the water’s edge. The design capitalizes on moments of natural splendor in social zones while playfully borrowing from foliage and topography in the creation of private contemplative spaces.

Southlands House House in Southlands Home in Southlands Residence in Southlands Southlands Residence
photographs : Kristopher Grunert

The house was designed around the structural grid established by an earlier residence. While remnants of original footings and columns remain, the Southlands Residence completely reinterprets the competing notions of privacy and exposure adjacent a well-travelled avenue. Strategically placed concrete fin walls in the landscape, meticulous interior millwork objects, and substantial feature skylights define private living zones on an otherwise open main level. Polished, heated concrete floors run continuously throughout. An exposed wood roof with jewel-like steel connections runs the length of the house, extending generously beyond large expanses of commercial curtain wall glazing. The deep eaves offer protection from glare and direct weather penetration while framing views of the planted basin and maximizing natural illumination. A perimeter network of decks straddles this covered zone, further blurring the line between interior and exterior. Surrounding bamboo, rhododendrons, and Japanese maples become as much a part of the interior living areas as the client’s carefully selected pieces of furniture.

Southlands House House in Southlands Home in Southlands Residence in Southlands Southlands Residence
photographs : Kristopher Grunert

Connection between the main floor and a lower living area brings one of many delightful architectural moments in the form of a highly crafted steel and glass stair. Descending to the more sequestered zone below affords a fleeting glimpse of the creek and navigable landscape beyond. Access to this private outdoor environment is provided on the north side of the house through an integrated garden storage and potting area. This deep threshold contains all the tools required for the client’s landscaping penchant while marking the start of a rich site circulation sequence. A concrete path crosses over the slow moving water and threads south under the sculpted wooden belly of the house. Where previously the landscape had bounded interior volumes, the building skin now frames entry into the luscious outdoor realm. The house fulfills its ambitions as a gateway and the final living space is revealed as the site itself – one level below and a world away.

Southlands House House in Southlands Home in Southlands Residence in Southlands
photographs : Kristopher Grunert

House in Southlands

Project Background: Historical Vancouver neighbourhood
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Context: New 3,200 sqft home built on existing structural grid
Completion: Nove 2011

New construction, Open plan
Main level: one bedroom, ensuite, living room, kitchen, dining room, powder room
Lower level: living room, spa bathroom, laundry, garden storage

Steel and timber, radiant concrete floors, wood siding, and concrete panel cladding Structure
Steel floor framing on timber columns
Composite steel and timber roof framing

Project Credits

Architecture and Interior Design Team: DIALOG – Principal-in-Charge: Alan Boniface ; Project Architect: Vance Harris ; Intern Architect: Adrian Politano
Structural: Equilibrium Consulting Inc. – Principal-in-Charge: Eric Karsh Project Engineer: Bernhard Gafner
Landscape: Hapa Collaborative – Principal-in-Charge: Joseph Fry
Geotechnical: Horizon Engineering – Principal-in-Charge: Karen Savage
Kitchen Design: Modulnova
General Contractor: Treeline Construction Project Manager: Brad Martin

Photography: Kristopher Grunert Imaging – Photographer: Kristopher Grunert

Southlands Site Plan ; Southlands Lower Floor ; Southlands Main Floor ; Southlands Sections:
Southlands Residence Southlands Residence Southlands Residence Southlands Residence
images : DIALOG

Southlands House images / information from DIALOG, Architects


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