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Thrupp + Summers House

Thrupp + Summers House

This house is built along a small east-west ridge in the foothills of the Sunshine Coast hinterland. The site is covered with eucalypts that provide dappled shade. At the clients’ specific request, there was minimal site disturbance.

The planning follows ideas developed for the Goetz house, but applied here in a more conventional form (glass louvres instead of the walls of fly-wire in the Goetz house). Like the Goetz house, the planning was guided by the need for climate control, and in addition, the clients’ special requirements for a variety of activities: music, study, printing, play and sewing, as well as an area for a child requiring special exercise, and ‘a place to sit in the sun’.

The open plan living spaces and the bedrooms are positioned to the north of a central gallery, with service spaces to the south. An outdoor, screened living area deck on the north-west corner captures light, sun and a view of the ocean.

A clerestory skylight over the gallery balances natural light to the internal spaces as well as providing high-level ventilation. Cross-ventilation is enhanced with full-height louvres on the north and north-east facades. These areas of glass were designed to be shaded by external venetian blinds, but the tree canopy provides almost perfect sun shading. Summer sun does not penetrate the house; autumn/spring sunlight is filtered; while in winter, sunlight penetrates the house though the tree trunks.

External materials of concrete block, plywood and corrugated metal were chosen for their aesthetic qualities as well as their low maintenance properties. Colours are based on the warm pink/browns of the tree trunks.

RAIA Awards

1989 Commendation – Residential Award

Builder Mel Dickson