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Aberdeen Lane

New build house, London

Year:
2003


Client:

Private client

Awards:

2003 RIBA Regional Award 
2003 Finalist Manser Medal 
2003 Finalist AJ First New Build

“A demonstration of a labour of aspiration and love, by its owner, architect and structural engineer.” Michael Manser 

“The Concrete House is wrought from planes of finely-honed concrete, using simple textured volumes to create a secluded family home.” Barrie Evans, The Architects’ Journal.

“The house is an intriguing mix of solid and transparent, with framed views that are cut into the thick concrete walls.” David Bennett, RIBA Journal.

Located on a secluded and narrow road, this new-build modernist house is known as the ‘Concrete House’. Built using a range of materials – primarily concrete, timber and limestone – the house takes on a cubic form as the planes of structure and textures are skilfully overlapped. To achieve a degree of privacy, the house was designed to face its own courtyard rather than the road.

The starting point was two interlocking cubes, one facing the lane and continuing the building line of the existing mews houses. The west elevation is entirely glazed, the glass set in a timber frame with the upper level veiled in vast timber shutters. The double skin concrete walls of the box structure act as bookends supporting the glass and timber elevation, while the concrete first-floor slab, the flat roof and the staircase, which avoids the need for columns. Internal spaces are divided by cupboards and shelving.

At night, the louvres act as a visual contrast to the solid texture of the concrete, contributing to privacy as well as controlling the flow of light into the rooms.

In the master bathroom, the shower and ‘Japanese’ bath enclosures were formed with the same hardwood used for the louvres and the internal faces of the walls were made with fair-faced concrete.