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An Airy Sydney Home Goes Vertical to Gain Space

By Dwell @dwell
W House facade

“The biggest design challenge was the facade,” says architect Mark Cashman. “It had to step back from the street and recede to give prominence to the heritage status warehouse facade.” Above the translucent bedroom level, a balcony with a herb garden steps back further. From the rooftop garden, downtown Sydney comes into full view.

Architecture firm MCK transformed a former glass factory and terrace house into a single-family residence by tapping into the potential of vertical space. 

The new home matches the cornice heights, if not the facades, of its adjoining neighbors. The vertical expression happens at a setback. Double-height internal spaces are paired with an enclosed courtyard of similar dimensions. Ultimately, the 2,900-square-foot site fits a 8,600-square-foot dwelling, including the courtyard and basement garage.

“The decision to go monochromatic was made early in the design process,” says principal Mark Cashman. “It’s a philosophy for most of our work that the architecture should be about form and space—a backdrop allowing the user and their life to be the color. In this case [we made] the warehouse fabric legible, sometimes contrasting and other times complementing.”

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