Inventive design wins
Nestled into a terraced Christchurch hillside site, Red Rock Lane is a two-bedroom house positioned to enjoy the view east to the Southern Alps. All living spaces are accommodated on the first floor within two dark stained cedar box forms. A more dominant north box, with its extensively glazed lounge, cantilevers out dramatically over a 13m lap pool and pool room.
Nic Curragh says the cantilevered glazed living box is a major element of the home.
“It's fundamental to the balcony and rear courtyard shelter on the first floor and forms a dominant aspect of the house when viewed from the North/East corner of the section, but also from the main road travelling through Redcliffs. To achieve the appearance of lightness, with the reflective pool waters on its raked under belly, required some clever engineering and a few tricks. When my clients mentioned the desire for a lap pool and pool room, I knew Red Rock Lane would present a magnificent opportunity to try some inventive structural design.”
Nic says in order for the pool room below to be clean of heavy structural beams and to accentuate the cantilever, exposed parallel support beams either side of the first-floor box are underslung.
“For this to work, a larger beam within the mid floor with tapered connections picks up their load. Utilising this principle, combined with discreet support columns and detailing, provides the illusion of a significant cantilever and enables the stacking glass doors on the ground floor to slide away completely, opening up the entire North/East corner beyond the form of the structure.”
Judges praised Nic for this exceptional design element saying the home has precise, careful, clean frames.
“It handles the underside of its floating volume well. The courtyard tucked back against the hillside is a great addition.”
Nic says winning a 2019 ADNZ Resene Architectural Design Award was immensely satisfying and it was made better with the owners of Red Rock Lane attending the awards in Queenstown to celebrate with Nic.
Nic says having solid working relationships with clients is the most important aspect of design and building.
“Communication and development of a mutual enthusiasm for the design and excitement as the build starts is critical. It can be a monumental period in life building a new home and very stressful for some people. Ensuring your clients have faith in the process, trust in you and understand the architecture can mitigate this anxiety. I’m very fortunate to have had some wonderful clients over the years and I develop great working relationships where the design and detail have been understood and adhered to perfectly during construction. Their homes today are a testament to this successful process.”
For more on Nic Curragh and Objects Limited visit: http://www.objects.co.nz/