Image: Ray Joyce
Here's what the jury thought:
"Annie & Peter’s House was the first of several houses that now occupy the former ‘Boot Forest’, a contentious subdivision on Churchill Avenue. The original land was owned and planted out in the early 1980s by Dr John Boot, with European elm, oak and silver birch and the reserve was of some significance to the local community. The remaining trees are now semi-mature.
The architects, mindful of the proximity of future neighbours and faced with a steep, narrow site conceived a strategy of solid, private volumes stepping down the contour, coupled with a singular circulation spine. This approach provided for protected, sun-filled courtyard spaces to extend the living spaces and connect to the landscaped periphery. The resulting geometry is an elegant progression of forms, buffered from Churchill Avenue by a landscaped entry zone containing some of the original deciduous trees.
Attention to masonry detail and contrasting exterior celery cladding articulate the building’s mass. Interiors are simple and comfortable, with the circulation zone and staircase given drama via a top-lit opening, uplifting the experience of moving through the home’s various levels. The owner-builder requirement in the brief demanded that the architects protect the design through largely ‘irreducible’ construction detailing and this projective method, combined with a faithful approach by the client, has contributed significantly to the project’s success."