VISION Issue 48 - Page 30

VISION 48 — LIGHT HOUSE Madeleine Blanchfield discusses the challenges and her answers in search of the great Australian dream: Why enter the competition? We got an email inviting architects to enter and at the eleventh hour I decided it was worth doing because it’s a genre that I’m really interested in. I think project housing hasn’t had a shakeup for quite a while. We do bespoke houses, so it felt like something we could potentially contribute to. VISION  MADELEINE BLANCHFIELD  Suburbia has been somewhat neglected by architects. Was this a chance for you to offer a meaningful alternative to the standard masonry and tile box? I think so. We learned a lot by doing single houses, that can be applied to the multiple housing market. Project housing often doesn’t get that level of attention from architects because it’s quite expensive to have an architect working on a house. We thought if we could transfer some of our knowledge to project homes, it was worth doing. What are some of the qualities of this house that separate it from its neighbours? Fundamental to our design and to all our house designs is orientation, correct sun-shading and thermal mass. The real issue with putting a design on any site, as project homes normally do, is not being able to adjust and face north with living areas that open to the sun. How do you address that? Our design is in two pieces which can be combined in different ways depending on the orientation of the site. So it’s always got northerly aspect, it’s always got the correct eaves, and living areas always open onto the garden.