A three bedroom corner site family house built 17 years ago on Dynevor Road, Stoke Newington, was one of ATA’s first green new builds. A low budget self build design for one of ATA’s partners, the project gave us the opportunity to build on our determined use of natural and
non toxic materials, (in this family both an adult and child were asthma sufferers) to explore ’breathing wall construction,’ to trial using innovating products and finishes, and to omit hazardous timber treatments.
It also demonstrated convincingly to us that the whole family can be part of the design process, both enriching the project and adding to the fun of the process.
The tight corner site led to a hexagonal plan, allowing all sides to address the street, a brick and rendered facade with carved stone dressings faces the front, while a more informal timber rear was allowed to unravel, leading to a small green courtyard. The resulting open triangular stairwell provides a vertical connection though the house and an excellent place for accidental conversation, while light comes into all rooms from at least two directions, creating beautiful interior spaces.
Close consultation with the planning department allowed for this unconventional design solution to be agreed to a tight timetable, and the project was completed within programme and budget.
The timber structure was coated with boron, an inert chemical which can act as both fire and insect protection treatment, recycled cellulose insulation was used between timber studwork, roof rafters and floor joists to achieve a low energy building, bitumen impregnated fibre board was used externally to allow the structure to ‘breathe’ and the rain screen cladding is untreated UK grown sweet chestnut. Natural paints and finishes were used throughout.