The Hanging Garden House

  • 2016

  • Architectural
    Architectual Design

Designed By:

  • Anderson Architecture Pty Ltd

Commissioned By:

A professional couple with a teenage child who are passionate about creative solutions and keen to embrace the use of sustainable design strategies within their home.

Designed In:


This house has been designed to make the most of a challenging site.

The house has been designed to maximise cross ventilation and uses thermal mass in the form of concrete floors and a green roof to passively heat during winter and keep the house cool in summer.

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  • The form of the house has been inspired by the space available and the need to minimise impacts on the site's neighbours. The first floor is a low level popup to minimise overshadowing, whilst the ground floor sits in a way to maximise views from the first floor to the new green roof whilst also affording this benefit to the ground level. The bulk is oriented to the boundary wall to ensure that eastern and western solar access is maximised to the new deck and internal spaces.

  • This design opens up the public spaces of the house to support communication and family living. It positions all living spaces away from the street towards the rear green spaces so that the deck and back yard can be treated as an additional outdoor room in nice weather. All bedrooms are located to the front of the house so that they can be acoustically separated and used concurrently with the communal entertaining areas.

  • This design meets all safety standards and regulations, including harness anchoring systems for the green roof and cables to prevent occupants falling through the first floor void over the study desk.

  • Sustainability has been a core focus of this design, please see below for specifics regarding this aspect of the design.

    Although small, this house has been built to the highest standard whilst minimising costs with economic material choices. Bespoke joinery has been made to suit both the space and the client's taste including kitchen, bathrooms, dining room, study, stairs, robe and bedroom. All spare spaces have built in nooks to suit the client's existing possessions and minimising their reliance on movable furniture. Similarly all junctions between new and old have been lovingly formed to show off the new relationship between surfaces. This can be seen where the new timber stair and concrete floor meet the existing brick wall and slate floor, whilst the existing timber beam, once hidden, is now sanded and oiled to celebrate it

    Innovation in this house comes in the form of material re-use, green vistas, and general layout. The once small and dark courtyard was the main access for natural light to the existing living spaces which were cramped and dank. By elevating this rear area, increasing glazing and turning the atrium into a light box, natural light is reflected into all living spaces.