The contemporary design of the duplex apartments was resolved after a thorough investigation of the potential of the ground floor and basement volume. The deep plan, three exposed elevations, multiple windows and doors, and a large basement created many challenges that have been overcome through the proposal.
The conversion created exciting interior spaces within the traditional envelope, without causing any disruption to the external elevation. Each duplex had its own front door, creating traditional entrances to the dwelling and makes full use of the buildings facades. By avoiding the blocking of the doorways, or the creation of a single orientation of the flats, the inhabitation of the building at street level wa increased and the character of the corner site maintained.
The bedrooms were positioned on the ground floor, adjacent to the main window flanked by the party wall. The structural layout lended itself to this organisation, and provided space suitable for en-suite bathrooms. A gallery walkway from the entrance to the stair creates dramatic views of the living and dining areas below and the corner section of the building.
Half of the ground floor area was been removed in order to provide direct light into the deeper basement areas. This was carried out on the Coombs Street elevation which offers large windows on each facade allowing the maximum amount of light through to the deeper areas, and making the most of the corner elevation.
The amenities and stair make use of the existing services and the areas of the plan which do not benefit from natural light. The simple and clear layouts create well facilitated accommodation with open plan kitchen and large living and dining area. The central living area was been raised, creating interesting mezzanine space and hierarchy within the plan. A central escape stair and storage wall provide substantial protection against noise transfer between the apartments.
In keeping with the upgrade of the property and the change of use, the existing elevation was restored and the external mesh security grilles and signage will be removed.