Architectural firm LGA Architectural Partners imagined this cleverly named Garden House as vertically stacked living spaces so that the garden space extends under large floor-to-ceiling windows and doors open at garden level.
The owner of this beautiful garden house wanted to remain in her neighborhood, but changed her old Edwardian house for a new construction in Toronto’s west end. Minimizing and decluttering her life was thus possible, as a new home can erase the boundaries between possible and impossible. So she decided to push even further and work with the architects in designing her home.
Simple, practical and bright spaces were given character with color, texture and patterns. Built on a modest budget, this Toronto garden house has a direct connection to the outdoors and the owner’s preferences. The breakfast room at the front of the house overlooks the street through a huge window and doubles as an indoor porch. The ground living floor is mostly opened to the garden. As the owners makes her way into the home from the garden, a set of three stairs lead up to a half-level where the kitchen, dining room and front entrance are. Architects reveal how the garden house unfolds vertically:
“On the second floor and at the nexus of the house, the library/office takes advantage of natural light and prime views with a desk placed in front of a floor-to-ceiling window overlooking mature backyard trees. Up a small stairway, the master bedroom and modest three-piece bathroom feel protected, but not cramped as big windows wash the interiors with natural light. A skylight above the open riser stairwell leading up to the second floor draws natural light down into the house, reducing the need for artificial light in the basement.”
Spreading over 2,800 square feet, the modern Canadian garden house boasts a warm and inviting front facade all dressed in wood, pierced by over-sized windows flooding spaces with natural light. The architects say that they designed “a neatly stacked trapezoidal box that maximizes the space of the narrow lot and breathes within the generosity of the adjacent laneway. They clad the front and back façades in no-maintenance cedar to warmly greet the street, and the sides with a dark cement board to visually “remove” the private house from the shared laneway.”
Inside the house, an elegant atmosphere reigns as spaces flow from one into the next. Light and airy, dotted with color here and there, this is how the interiors of this magnificent Garden House in Toronto present themselves through the lens of photographer Ben Rahn of A-Frame.
Value for money is not, and never was, the same as being cheap. Value for money means making the most of whatever budget is available. A good example of this is Hayes Primary School in London, by Hayhurst and Co. Having to contend with a tightly controlled 3 million local authority budget, they worked with the existing structure of the primary school to give it a much needed update. A striking polished stainless steel brise-soleil facade installed at the school’s entrance, gives the school’s many different buildings a sense of identity, while new classrooms have been created in a range of shapes and sizes, and are often flooded with natural light
These days, a building doesnt just have to look good, it should ideally be good for the environment too. A great example of sustainability spliced with style from the past few years is the M&S store at Cheshire Oaks Retail Park in Ellesmere Port, designed by Aukett Fitzroy Robinson.