Adam Dettrick Architects decided to put function before form when they designed the Narrabundah House, but you would be forgiven for thinking things happened the other way round. An angular roof that extends on either side of the house not only frames beautiful views of the surrounding landscape, but also provides shelter and privacy so the family can enjoy the sunshine all year round. The house has been designed to accommodate the family of four in the present, but also provide them room to grow and develop as individuals over the years.
Within the house, the living area, which opens to the north at the rear, is configured to harness the winter sun and provide an unobstructed view of the 100-year-old eucalyptus tree growing outside. At the front, the angular roof converges into a boxed terrace that offers beautiful views of the rolling country towards the distant Cuumbuen Nature Reserve.
A long hallway at the centre of the house creates a clear separation between the living and sleeping areas. The combined dining room and kitchen connects to the rear terrace, which means it can also benefit from the low winter sun thanks to a set of sliding glass doors. Away from the shared areas, there is a study and music room for the children to practice, along with a storage room and garage hidden in the basement.
Simple passive design techniques were employed throughout the house to try and reduce its environmental footprint on the area. Good orientation, sun shading, double glazing, heavy insulation and non-toxic materials help to reduce the need for artificial heating and cooling, while also enhancing the family’s comfort. [photography by Adam Dettrick Architects]