This project required the design of a substantial family home on a restricted suburban block. The mundane suburban context of the project demanded a response which both challenged its neighborhood while providing the owners with a sense of privacy and connection with the broader landscape and river views. The architectural solution is a long, low dwelling benched into its steep site, offering protection from the street and close neighbors, while opening up to capture daylight and views from its elevated riverside location.





2008 Australian Institute of Architects - Residential - New (Commendation)


“The architects were faced with a long, narrow steep block and an overbearing conglomeration of suburban houses which hemmed in the site, while a spectacular view lay below the slope. The solution was simple but effective: cut out the neighbors and enhance the experience of the view.

In contrast to the surrounding houses, Ian & Jean’s presents a plain façade to the street with a colorful door and a canopy that sails overhead and projects down, inviting entrance and exploration. On entrance, stairs and the canopy direct the attention down to a deck and living area projecting beyond the slope. The fully glazed end to the living area captures a view of the sea and distant hills. Opening to the side, the deck takes in the sweep of Blackmans Bay. The living area slides back into the hillside forming a deep and enclosed space, a relief and counterpoint to the expansive setting.  

The architects have skillfully managed a context of contrasts and found a solution that in resolving the problem of privacy from overlooking neighbors has accentuated the experience of the magnificent setting.”


Builder: Fair Brother Pty Ltd

Structural/Hydraulic Engineers: Gandy & Roberts

Electrical/Mechanical Engineer: Kingston & Associates

Landscape Architect: Susan Small Landscape Architects

Building Surveyor: Lee Tyers Building Surveyors

Quantity Surveyor: Stehel Consultants P/L