Additions & Alterations - Heritage

Design Brief

The project involved the refurbishment of the original heritage-listed 1908 cottage to accommodate a sensible sized addition to accommodate their family and lifestyle.

The existing cottage was structurally in poor condition and was with some termite damage which needed to be rebuilt. The clients brief was to repair the cottage and demolish the rear additions to replace them with new open plan living, double garage with a pool and entertainment area.

We were required to overcome Councils constraints for a heritage listing and to address the impediment of the flood level that required the new floor level to be increased by 630mm. The client stipulated that the additions have high ceilings, roof pitch to match the existing cottage and to take advantage of water views.

Design Solution

Utilising old photographs the renovations included sympathetic additions that skillfully keep the historical significance and the unique nuances of the building intact.

The additions have been sited to the rear of the original cottage which is located facing the waterfront reserve. This allows the cottage to remain the dominant feature in an enclave that is dotted with traditionally built homes.

Open plan living was created to improve natural light and ventilation. A low skillion roof links the old cottage to the new bedrooms and bathrooms at the front of the cottage. Split levels were integrated into the floor plan.

Landscaped gardens lead you to the new front entry via the Lych gate. The three dimensional form combined with the hexagon roof cabana provides high visual impact to the 2nd street frontage.


Media Release Statement

“Empire House” is located on The Central Coast of NSW. The project involved the refurbishment of the original heritage-listed 1908 cottage. Utilising old photographs the renovations included sympathetic additions that skillfully keep the historical significance and the unique nuances of the building intact whilst accommodating modern contemporary living.

The new additions have been sited to the rear of the original cottage which is located facing the waterfront reserve. This allows the cottage to remain the dominant feature in an enclave that is dotted with traditionally built homes.

All woodwork was hand crafted to match original joinery profiles. The window surrounds, picket fence and gable end profile were replicated having a sculptural quality made possible by the talented local trades people. The original Australian cedar doors were restored. Rusticated weatherboard cladding was selected as a close match to the original cladding profile.

The existing cottage was structurally in poor condition with some termite damage and was partly reconstructed.

The three dimensional form combined with the hexagon roof cabana provides high visual impact to the street frontage. A low skillion roof links the old cottage to the new. Landscaped gardens lead you to the new front entry. Open plan living areas flow to the pool terrace. Glass pool fencing was discretely positioned so it would not inhibit the flow of surrounding space.

This renovation provides a clear articulation of old from new, The “Empire House” project is a stunning example of what can be achieved when the preservation of a historically significant cottage is expertly combined with innovative, functional and sustainable design for a modern family home.