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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

Blundell New Residence in Upper Hutt, New Zealand by Studio MWA

 
October 2nd, 2012 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Studio MWA – Studio Mikulcic Worldwide Architecture

Working on this unique and exciting project , from start,  for me has imperative and goals to celebrate good, functional, innovative, sustainable, brave and imaginative architecture, different than ordinary ones, which push ‘boundaries’ of everyday stereotype.

New Residence designed to specially accommodate everyday needs of person on wheel chair incorporate enclosed area of 267 m2, extensive covered outdoor living with big decking around with raised garden and big pond, situated on sloppy site with north aspect with total site area of 2100 m2.

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

  • Architects: Studio MWA – Studio Mikulcic Worldwide Architecture
  • Project: Blundell new Residence
  • Location: 36 Sylvan Way, Silverstream – Upper Hutt,  New Zealand
  • Photographs: Ivor Earp Jones & courtesy of studio MWA ltd.
  • Client: Mr. Phillip Blundell & Mrs. Helen Blundell
  • Author of the project: DaVoR Mikulcic Dipl. Eng. Arch. (Sarajevo) ANZIA, RAIA
  • Project Team: DaVoR Mikulcic, Shantanu Kirtikar, Michael Maddern, David Thomson &Daniel Casas
  • Structural Engineer: Meyers and Associates Ltd. – Wellington
  • Land Surveyor: Lendrums & Associates Ltd. – Upper Hutt
  • Principle Use: New Residence for family with person on wheel chair
  • Number of stories: single story building
  • Size: Floor area 267 m2, terraces app.150 m2, landscaped over 450 m2, sloppy site of 2100 m2.
  • Status: Completed
  • Cost: NZ $ 850,000.00
  • Design & documentation period:  June 2003 – December 2004
  • Construction period: 2005 – 2008
  • Software used: ArchiCAD software in combination with Artlantis studio (renderings and animations)

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

  • Building structure: Reinforced concrete slab, Steel structure (portals, posts and beams) and Timber structures
  • Main Contractor: Maridale Construction LTD.
  • Structural steel work: Whakatiki Engineering Ltd.
  • Aluminium Joinery: Westview Aluminium Ltd.
  •  Roof & wall coloursteel metal cladding: Silbery Roofing Ltd.
  • Joinery: Noble Kitchens – Upper Hutt (Mr. Hadrian Noble)
  • Polish Concrete Floor: B.M. Scott ltd. – Levin

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

  • Main material finishes:

    • Reinforced concrete slab with polished concrete floor finish through entire residence
    • Under floor hot water heating, with German computerized furnace/boiler by ROTEX connected to solar panels.
    • Solar panels for hot water
    • All along north and west decking terraces close to bush install sprinkler system as fire protection
    • Kitchen, and laundry cabinetry completed in Meltica melamine finish
    • Kitchen island and working bench manufactured from stainless steel
    • Ensuite, bathroom, toilet cabinetry and main living room entertaining unit produced from Jara timber.
    • Roofing and metal wall cladding is “L7 profile” trapezoid 0.48 mm coloursteel profile by Silbery Roofing Ltd. – New Zealand
    • Partially exterior walls (East elevation) are clad with James Hardie “Titan board” panels with exposed negative detail and cavity.
    • Interior walls and ceilings generally completed in plasterboard with high quality spray paint finish
    • Exterior aluminum joinery with double glazing (exterior glass panels laminated grey tinted glass with 12 mm air gap and low E gas and interior 6 mm clear glass).
    • Exterior decking is hardwood Kwila boards 18×90 mm over timber structure.
    • Eaves are Villaboard panels by James Hardie, plastered and painted
    • Generally, most of materials used on this project are from local resources and predominantly material used are recyclable and ecologically friendly
    • Passive solar collection and exceptionally well orientated and positioned building are just some of many typical ecologically responsible solutions implemented through this project.
    • Central polish concrete block wall, thermally insulated, perform as Tromb wall and further reinforce idea about passive solar accumulation – solar collector an feature wall.
    • Through building we used for roof and walls the best recommended thermal insulation battens (natural product) to achieve the best possible thermal building performances for quality and comfort everyday life.

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Initial client brief consisted more than 10 pages of exact and explicit requirements (particularly relevant for person on wheelchair) and some of them are:

  • Spatial requirements were conventional, but the project required much more exploration in order to accommodate a new Residence, without compromising the quality of interior or exterior spaces.
  • Design Residence without internal/external “boundaries and obstructions” – to be comfortable, safe and easy accessible and that can adopt to the changing needs of family..
  • Outdoor living is very important and has to provide opportunity for exercise, gardening and entertaining etc.
  • For interior and exterior finishes Architect has ‘free hand’ from Client to come up with the most appropriate solutions to fit architectural composition, functional requirements and budget.
  • Through design maximize usage of sun and “passive” solar energy and include under floor heating, solar panels for hot water, double glazing, the best thermal insulation etc. etc.

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Quality relationship between client and architect is one of crucial key for successful Project. Openness, transparency and appreciation of different opinions with same goal to achieve quality Project for family in 21 century result with home (spaces) which will inspire, provide shelter, give opportunity to dream, to play, to love, to invite and meet others.

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

“Merging spaces” create filing and impression of openness and spacious, but in same time with “hidden” pocket sliding walls/doors give opportunity to visually and physically determinate spaces when required.

New Residence incorporate triple garage, entry hall – gallery, open plan kitchen living – dining area, separate formal living and dining area, Master bedroom with walk-in wardrobe and ensuite, two separate visitors double bedrooms with separate bathroom, studio (or fourth bedroom) laundry – utility space, storage room, covered deck area with spa pool, expansive decking all around residence with ramps and raised garden (to be able to work from wheel chair), pond plus much more.

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

As author of this exciting project I can say that through long journey from start to completion, my client and I created lifetime friendship.

Clients comment given to LIFTIME DESIGN magazine – published in the United Kingdom, Europe, the United State, Australia and New Zealand the best illustrate client satisfaction with completed Project:

“I use wheelchair as result of an accident. We engaged an architect to design a home that would meet my unique needs, allow me to live at home as I aged, give me full access to inside and outside, and be equally comfortable and functional for my family. Hallways, doors, and spaces are wide, allowing an easy 360 – degree turn with wheelchair. All around the house decks are at same level as the concrete driveway entrance. There are ramps to lower level decks with build in garden boxes. This home doesn’t say ‘disability’. Anyone could move in and live here – they’d love it”.           Mr. Phillip Blundell

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Everything’s just so easy. I drive in, open the door, bring in the shopping – I just walk straight through. There are no steps, there are no obstacles. Whenever we’ve been away and we come home it’s just …..oh, phew! We’ve both got so used to the wide open spaces. I’ve adapted to not tripping over things or having to walk around things. It’s hugely more relaxed. We have friends in a wheelchair and ours is the only house they’ll visit. Other places aren’t safe and accessible enough. We also both have elderly parents – and it’s totally not problem for them to come and visit us.”                        Mrs. Helen Blundell

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

New Zealand institute of Architects, Jury citation for award in architecture for this Project:

“The thoughtful and considered application of universal principles of accessibility has made for a fully integrated solution to living on wheels on the side of a hill. The design, planning, construction and attention to detail have been thoroughly explored and executed to form a spacious, supportive and naturally accessible living environment.

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

Image Courtesy © Ivor Earp Jones & Studio MWA

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Categories: ArchiCAD, Artlantis, House, Residential

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