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Lens House, London, United Kingdom

Tuesday 23 Oct 2012

Folding extension for London residence

Images: Jake Fitzjones 
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Origami-inspired expansion of private home completed by Alison Brooks Architects 

A spectacular new extension sits discreetly behind an 1860 North London house. Designed by Stirling Prize winning Alison Brooks Architects, this new space is formed from an angular projection of dynamic shapes and planes. The structure is unique in its creative vision which is emphasised by a striking rain screen façade.

The design is compiled from a jigsaw of geometric elements which have been organised to provide an aesthetic fascination in addition to a durable functionality. The new structure houses an open plan kitchen/dining space with a cantilevered expansion of the living space above this. In addition there is an opening to a terrace which partially rests over the spacious new garden level home office.

"This project was a fantastic opportunity to take a highly sculptural approach to a London house conversion and extension that now provides a family home plus workspace," Alison Brooks comments. "The extensions were designed to draw in light from the sky, embrace the garden, and capture a precise view of the massive walnut tree near the house."

The eight-sided trapezoidal form keeps a low profile from the street as it rests lightly on the ground with undercut walls to avoid the tree roots. The geometric arrangement funnels light into the workspace. Where the side and rear bay window extensions merge, seven surfaces come together at one point. Each panel is either fully glazed or fully solid which results in are no ‘punched windows'. The form is suggestive of the folded surfaces of origami.

The complexity of this building geometry required a flat rain screen cladding material which was dimensionally stable and which could be cut to precise shapes. As a result the form is clad in Corian® panels. A vented rain screen system has allowed for rainwater gutters and downpipes to be concealed underneath the cladding, producing a clean and sculptural architectural form.

Key Facts

Status Completed
Value 0(m€)
Were you involved in this scheme?
Alison Brooks Architects

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