John Residence, Mount Lawley

Design Feasibility for an Owner Occupier

Site Context:



Design Proposal


Varied Options

Building Notes


The Owner of this 1950’s home, set in the Heritage Precinct of Mount Lawley was looking to improve upon the existing home configuration. She had a good idea of the new spaces she wanted to achieve in the new built that would cater for the changing needs of her family. She had a fixed budget in mind and a number of different design options were presented in order to find one that would meet both her budgetary and growing family requirements.

Despite being set in a Heritage Precinct, the actual house itself was of limited heritage significance and, over the years, underwent a number of extensions that did not particularly enhance its historic nature. The various renovations had occurred under different ownership and the final outcome was a house with various construction styles, finish floor levels and uneven walls.

The challenge – preserve and enhance the selected portion of the home that the owner found endearing, eliminate the mismatched renovations and work within the owners given restrictions.

As part of the new design, the owner wanted a new alfresco area, an additional master bedroom, a second living room as well as an updated kitchen and en-suite for the new master bedroom.



To provide the owner with maximum flexibility, a number of design options were considered.

Option A called for the retention of all existing walls, with refurbishment work being done only to the internal areas to meet the owners requirements.

Option B called for the partial retention of some walls and the demolition of others to extend slightly the footprint of the home and provide for more flexible layouts. This would require a new roof which the Owner would opportunistically install to match those found in a home of this period.

Option C called for the demolition of the entire back portion to allow for a completely new footprint and maximum layout flexibility. With this option, the Owner could also take advantage of removing the older Outback buildings at the back to end up with a larger backyard that could eventually be landscaped.

All the options above were holistic and entailed other ancillary areas not found in the initial brief, but which would allow for the Owner to Stage the renovations over a period of time to eventually achieve her “dream” home.

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