Split House

Split House

MCK Architects
Paddington NSW, Australia | View Map
Project Year
Private Houses
Willem Rethmeier
Product Spec Sheet

ElementBrandProduct Name
PendantsTom Dixon
Door HardwareHalliday Baillie
Satin Chrome Doorstop
CarpeSupertuft Carpets
Escape Velour
Windows- Blackbutt, semi - gloss polyurethane finishArtarmon Joinery

Product Spec Sheet
Sombra by Euroluce
Door Hardware
Satin Chrome Doorstop by Halliday Baillie
Escape Velour by Supertuft Carpets
Windows- Blackbutt, semi - gloss polyurethane finish

Split House

MCK Architects as Architects

The Split House is primarily the reinvention of an existing yet dated Paddington Terrace. The owners sought to adapt the existing dwelling for their young growing family and retain the positive features [the good bones] of the house and mend the negatives.


Spatial segregation is retained by virtue of the split level nature of the bui lding’s section. The primary Living Zone is pushed to the Ground Floor connecting to the yard to the North and to a newly formed light - well / courtyard to the South. Here, unused existing sub - floor basement spaces were embraced and incorporated into the in terior of the design. The existing front courtyard was sacrificed to allow natural light + ventilation to penetrate to the former basement. A void was also added over this space to connect it to the adapted formal entry point of the house.


An existing light - well was also adapted and continued from the lower ground floor up to the roof. Living spaces open to the light - well whereas the more private spaces have been closed off either in solidarity or with fixed glass as a minimum. The roof - light over the ligh t - well was also re - shaped to better serve the public space within the house and not bedroom zones. In this respect it now feeds the main vertical spine of the house with an abundance of natural light, and can be shut down with an external blind during the hotter months.


Aside from the basement area, the only additional floor space added was an addition to the master bedroom at first floor level. Here, a finely crafted steel box has been inserted within the existing roof form and is perched proudly above th e Paddington roof - scape. The other levels are then defined by horizontal bands stretched between two parallel masonry party walls with floor to ceiling and wall to wall glazing. Emphasis on the parallel party walls as spatial parameters is reinforced with a full width floating planter box at the first floor level. These devices allow the space to always feel as wide as possible.


The owners had a genuine green agenda included in their brief with the inclusion of rainwater harvesting, grey water measures, pa ssive solar control measures + solar energy collection. Despite a long battle, the latter was unfortunately refused by Local Council in favour of respecting the heritage view from the rear access lane back to the existing tiled roof.

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