Contributing Monkie G Monkie
Published on September 6, 2009
Here is a pretty special outdoor living style home down under, Kangaroo Valley House by Alexander Michael.
From the Architect
“There are primarily two parts to this building, one being the main living area, the other being the two individual bedrooms separated from the main building by a semi-covered walkway. As this was a weekender, I wanted it to feel like one, and so the walk outside to get to the bedrooms gives it a kind of resort atmosphere, as well as doubling as an escape from the bustle of the living area.
The Living area is basically a simple rectangular space with a polished concrete floor, eighty percent enclosed by retractable glass walls, and single-span composite timber beams supporting the sub-roof ceiling. At twenty meters long, by seven meters wide, there is no internal structure, the only division being the Utility Pod bringing the services up through the concrete slab to the kitchen, WC, laundry, and media room. Like a house of cards, the entire pod is fabricated from structural fibrous cement sheet, only held together by exposed galvanised steel braces. The Pod stops well short of the ceiling to allow for visual flow-through. Like the Pod, I’ve used the same material to sheet all of the exterior walls as well as the top of the sub-roof. In its raw state, fibrous cement sheet is a wonderful, but under-utilised and misunderstood material, thanks mostly to its infamous predecessor, asbestos sheeting. Covering all of this like a giant sun-shade, is a primary roof structure of galvanised steel supported by twelve massive timber columns, four of which stand in the twenty-seven meter long reflection pond. It is this roof that supports the sub-roof by four fine steel rods, allowing three sides of the living area to be opened to the landscape.”
Six more photos after the jump.