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Innovative Home Renovation by Steffen Welsch Architects

a nice view of the house from the backyardA heritage home in Melbourne receives an update that solves a problem faced by many older homes. Typically, older houses feature poor lighting and a lack of design planning, which fails to maximize floor space. Fortunately, Steffen Welsch Architects solved both issues for the Parkville House using a stunning glazed atrium addition.

Combining the Old with the New

Between two existing masonry structures sits a new insertion that acts as an extension between the two buildings. Rather than making significant structural changes to the existing home, an additional layer seemed a far more viable solution. The glazed atrium dining area adds volume and welcomes plenty of natural light deep into the home.

Most importantly, the addition of the atrium maximized the home’s floor space. Perhaps one of the most beneficial aspects of the addition is the fact that the designers focused on future needs, too. Currently, the smaller masonry building now connected to the home provides two additional bedrooms. It may also serve as a retreat for teens or a separate dwelling for older parents later down the road.

The additional space looks out into a sunny courtyard where families can gather or kids can romp and play. Because of the atrium’s placement, the house ventilates far more efficiently than it did before. Cool breezes filter through the house during the summer months. By combining the old with the new, or the existing masonry buildings with the atrium, the entire home benefits.

Exploring the Features

The atrium adds many features that enhance the living space for the family. Features include:

  • Centralized hub: The atrium acts as a centralized hub where the family can gather in a well-lit, communal space
  • Natural light: The home receives plenty of sunlight thanks to the clerestory windows
  • Future planning: The area offers future planning by providing additional rooms for bedrooms, hang out spots, or future lease options
  • Additional space: The house gains the feature of added space while maximizing the flow of other rooms
  • Cooling effect: Perhaps the most beneficial features is that the home receives a much-needed cooling effect when warmer weather strikes

The architects opened walls in the house to make room for the atrium, which in turn made the floor plan more family-friendly. The combination of glass and timber makes the area appear modern, inviting, and comfortable.

The greatest achievement brought forth by this renovation is the fact that the original beauty of the historic home remains intact while adding a modern element. Easy access to the bright and sunny courtyard extends gathering options for the family and their guests.

Bright white walls and light wood flooring give the space a clean, sleek look. That same appearance filters into the kitchen with light wood cabinets combined with white cabinets and countertops. The atrium addition proves that traditional and modern amenities can co-exist beautifully

Overall, the atrium is a stunning feature that acts as an enhancement of the original structure. It does not detract from the beauty of the home’s history, nor does it conflict with the visual attraction of the house. If anything, it seems to provide a greater sense of curb appeal.

Design by Steffen Welsch Architects

Design by Steffen Welsch Architects

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