Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Michael Ong Design Office

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House

Architects: MODO – Michael Ong Design Office
Project: 1920’s Brick Bungalow Addition / Open House
Location: Hawthorn East, Melbourne, Australia
Builder: Seventy7 Projects
Photography: MODO

What is Open House?
Located in the leafy suburb of Hawthorn East, Open house is an renovation and addition to an existing brick bungalow. The existing house was in great condition, however the rear lean to extension completed in the 1970s has become an awkward living area with a poor connection to the garden. Once in the garden, the constraint of the site geometry becomes apparent, the triangular block compressed towards the back, forming a rather narrow garden, made tighter with a large stand alone shed.

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 1

The client came to us prior to purchasing the house to understand how they could convert this home for family of 4, and importantly a house that not only compliments their lifestyle but one that can enhance their connection between the family, garden and their home.

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 2

Sense of light and air
Our understanding of space can be drastically influences by how we bring in air and light. The current extension at the rear has become an obstacle, blocking out the air flow and sadly limiting the northern exposure, resulting in spaces that were dark and that felt small.

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 3

Value through design
We immediately knew the best method to bring value through design would be to remove the lean to. By pulling open the rear facade and changing the relationship the existing spaces had with light and air, we were able to revitalise the existing spaces. Creating rooms that are brighter, which as a result made spaces that felt and function bigger.

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 4

Proportion in design
Our client understood the value of create an architectural response that was simple, minimal and deliberate. We purposely pared back the building form and materials, to allow the proportions of the house stand clear. The slender wide windows allow the house to frame a panoramic view of the garden, this long rectangular view was carefully detailed to widen the perspective of the garden. Creating an optical illusion of making the garden itself feel wider then it actually is.

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 5

The three sliding doors, can then be slid away into the fixed pane to the side, instantly opening up the entire house into the exterior. The deep timber surround around the windows can then be used as an inviting seat bringing the family out into the garden, while the top eave acts as a sun shade to block out the northern sun while still letting in the winter light.

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 6

Building less but building better
Rather then simply adding more to the original house, we looked at what we could do within the original and raise the question, how much space is actually needed to fulfil the functions of the brief?

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 7

Firstly, by removing the rear lean to and opening up the northern facade, we were able to flood the existing living areas with much more light and air, instantly making it feel larger and more functional. Our focus then became on the finer details, based around material selection, construction method, integrated joinery and lighting. Ultimately we were able to reduce the overall floor area of the house, while adding in more light, air, function and liveability.

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 8

A common misconception is real estate is bigger is better, here we challenge this notion and design a house which is smaller then the original dwelling but one that provides more function and vitality than the original dwelling. Through a thoughtful and analytical design process we were able to make every space work efficiently and effectively, while maintaining flexibility for the growing needs of a young family of four.

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 9

Brick Bungalow Addition by MODO Architecture: Open House 10

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

To be updated with all the latest news, offers and special announcements.

3 Bedroom Home Designed with a Courtyard in the Middle

The design brief called for a relatively efficient 3 bedroom home to accommodate family life and flexible occupation of the adult children in rural south-eastern Auckland.

Collingwood House – Prefabricated House with Passive Design

Collingwood House is a single-family home designed by Melbourne-based ArchiBlox. Located in the inner urban precinct of Collingwood, the prefabricated Collingwood House is nestled on a...

Federal-Style Townhouse in Manhattan Gets Inspiring Renovation

This Federal-style townhouse, once located in the historical Washington Street Market active from the 1770s to 1960s, was used for most of its life as an egg and poultry distributor.

Modern Duplex Family House in Downtown Beirut

With a global portfolio of completed projects including luxurious homes, private yachts and commercial environments, Askdeco, a full-service design firm based in Lebanon, is proud to showcase its One Oak 3&4 B2 residential project in the dynamic heart of downtown Beirut