Located in Ocean Grove, a Victorian seaside town just over an hour and a half from inner Melbourne, this home was originally designed for a local builder and his young family.
When Josh Crosbie Architects were tasked with this project, the site was flat and vacant, bordering a nature reserve. ‘It was really important to our clients that harmony existed between the house and the surrounding natural environment’, Josh Crosbie tells. Genuine care to make as little impact as possible was a top priority, and the home was designed to ensure that no trees would need to be removed from the site, and even dead trees were left alone, to help protect the native wildlife habitat.
The house itself is impressive and dynamic, both aesthetically and functionally. The client’s ‘passion for irregular shapes’ and desire for a large family home informed a unique design for the dwelling, comprising two triangular forms separated by a large feature curved rammed earth wall. This wall is a defining feature of Yellowgums both inside and out, splicing through the home and drawing apart in the middle to reveal the central kitchen.
Huge glass doors and windows leading from the living spaces out onto the deck make the most of the block’s northern orientation. This, combined with a floor made of a burnished concrete slab, absorbs the winter sun to naturally help regulate the internal temperature. Solar panels, recycled hardwood and a rainwater tank are incorporated into the build.
A simple but strong facade has been achieved through native hardwood cladding of Silvertop ash, which blends elegantly and naturally into the surrounding landscape.