LRA lay claim to one of the few examples of modern housing where a solution has been found
Chandlers Mews is a direct response to the public's misconception that "Contemporary, sustainable housing design is both undesirable and unaffordable to all but a few determined to obtain both at any cost".
Liam Russell Architects can lay claim to one of the few examples of modern housing where a solution has been found (in architectural terms) to all of the problems faced by modern society where it has lost its identity and therefore its ambition.
The site, land-locked amidst a timeline of existing housing types, was earmarked for a quick solution. The favoured response was a single bungalow using tried, tested and uninspiring materials. The solution by LRA was to consult widely and compose a design that was completely contextual, working with the surrounding conditions and tackling the wider problem of the negative effects of high-density development in built-up-areas. Neighbours and the wider community have celebrated this development and embraced its design and ambition contrary to expectation.
With integrated solar technology, green roofs and site specific form this 'first Eco-development for Eastbourne, (UK)' has been lauded by an initially reticent local authority and its popularity continues to grow. It is important in the same way that Bic is to stationary; conceived as low cost and at £1,200 GBP per square metre the practice worked with a local builder-developer to achieve a solution representing the best of a hybrid of design ambition with commercial viability (through a recession) and sustainability; super-insulated housing for a wider population. The spirit behind these homes serve as a model for architects committed to reductive, modern ways of construction.
The site has a special quality; an 'It has to be seen with your own eyes' reaction is common. This design embodies the ideas that 'Design solves all problems' and conscientious modern design is popular, important and delightful.