Alexandra Street House, South Yarra

The design for Alexandra Street House came from a series of studies in massing. The building reads as a strong, heavy form, which is broken down through a series of shifts and slippages. Hints of almost carved, sheltered spaces behind the building’s skin are evident where these slippages occur, resulting in an introverted dwelling that reveals itself only once inside.

The house is sited in the long arm of an L-shaped lot and the plan has been articulated to respond to this. The more public areas on the ground floor are open plan and outward looking, with slippages here encouraging visual connections. The semi-enclosed courtyard allows glimpses of the garden providing relief to the long hallway. A series of intimate spaces are formed as the building folds around them.

High solid balustrades afford visual and acoustic protection while deeply recessed windows and integrated balconies help the house to read as a solid form. The use of voids and cut-outs allow glimpses into some of these protected spaces while still allowing for a high level of privacy to the first floor.