This awardwinning Huon Valley home is one out of the box
ASMALL house at Franklin made a big impression on the judges at this year’s Tasmanian Architecture Awards.
The Cross House, designed by Hobart architects Taylor and Hinds, took home the pinnacle Esmond Dorney Award for Residential Architecture.
Poppy Taylor and Mat Hinds designed the house for a client on a dramatic site overlooking Franklin and the Huon River.
There was an original house on the property and the initial idea was to extend. But, Mat said, when discussing things like how their clients wanted to live, it became clear that the project was going to take a different path.
“We have often found that residential clients engage an architect to build their dream home just once in their life,” he said.
“The trust that they have to give you to do something unique and make it extraordinary for them, that takes a lot.
We used black to cause a shadow and deepen the threshold as you go in, then when the view is reintroduced the impact is intensified
“The owners of the Cross House, they were fabulous and put their trust in us from the very beginning.”
As there was already a house on the site, the Cross House could only be 90 sqm total.
Mat and Poppy used the site’s landscape and the house’s orientation so that the Cross House “turns its back” on the property’s original house providing privacy between the two despite being only a short walk from one another.
Mat said the house’s floorplan was not square. Instead, rooms huddle around a centripetal floorplan.
“The plan pushes and pulls in different ways,” Mat said.
“We had to shave some edges off to crimp the square-metreage from 96sqm
to 90sqm,” he said.
“That is part of the reason why the form of the house is the way it is.”
The architects’ strategy resulted in a home with a sense of an expansive interior within its tight floorplan.
“This was further emphasised by the contrast between the dark interior palette of the house, which highlights the play of sunlight upon the landscape,” he said.
The plan placed the master bedroom privately away from the guest bedroom while the living space was ideally positioned for the sun and views.
The entry to the home is as unique as the floorplan.
Mat said “essentially you enter into the middle of the plan”.
“We used black to cause a shadow and deepen the threshold as you go in, then when the view is reintroduced the impact is intensified,” he said.
From the shower the owners can take in valley views.
It is another atypical space, not your usual white shower but instead a bold yellow was chosen to add warmth.
“The idea was that they could bath in a warmer light,” Mat said.
The exterior of the home takes cues from the area’s history of apple farming.
Mat described the exterior as a “sim- ple, steel shell” much like the sheds found on old farms.
In their citation, the judges said: “This house is an exceptional example of Tasmanian architects’ authenticity and ability to deal with real problems at a small scale with very limited budgets.”
A huge effort by the architects ensures that this unassuming house is very well built and detailed, with evidence of concerted attention to detail and good environmental performance.”
Taylor and Hinds also won the Edith Emery Award for Residential Architecture (Alterations and Additions) at the 2017 Tasmanian Architecture Awards.