Perched on a hill in Richmond, the James Street Residence is a multi-generational, multicultural family home. The building is made from two distinct parts – a restoration of the existing period home which revitalises one of the first examples of a kit home in Australia and a modern extension. Together the two create a cross section through architectural history along James Street. The aim was to have the best of both worlds – the heritage values of the site combined with an exaggeration of the possibility of the future.
Each component creates its own distinct vernacular. The period building visibly restores, renovates and brings back from the brink of demolition the heritage workers cottage and intact outhouse. Most clients and architects would have looked at the existing building with despair but for this project the site and house have been turned into a massive opportunity to salvage a piece of history and the lifestyle it represents. Given the state of the existing building, it was a full resurrection. The redesign reinstated the architectural elements of the veranda, French doors and timber weather boards. The internal structure and frame was rebuilt and re-straightened creating a new internal skin within the weathered existing skin. The new internal plan respects all