On what is one of the most idyllic sites which we have been entrusted with, the small, single storey dwelling which currently occupies the shore edge of Fahan Creek is to be removed and replaced with a more contemporary styled dwelling. Pre application enquiries (which continue to be ongoing) with Donegal Planning Department have proved positive as to the approach being taken towards a more contemporary type house, befitting of this dramatic location on the water’s edge. Although the house will, through both sites constraints and client brief, remain very small, it is our intention to provide a design which responds to both client requirements and environmental considerations. The images shown are of the current design, which is in discussion with planning – further images will be added as the project progresses.
Category Archives: Bespoke Dwellings
At first inspection of this site, it seemed almost implausible that it could be made to work, due to the steeply inclined and long access route. Located at the bottom of a valley, with the adjoining public roadway running some way above the actual site for the dwelling, the house was designed to occupy the sloping nature of the ground into which it was to be set. This benefitted the proposal in that it integrated into the natural slope so as to allow an improved design which was not overly reliant on large retaining walls, and as such the overall internal layout of the house itself become much more interesting, since a tiered / split level design developed. The main living areas and kitchen were placed so as to fully exploit the sun path throughout the day, as well as the main aspects of the surrounding valley. With the main entrance being located to the upper side of the design, the living spaces were also allowed to be much more private. Although quite a modest sized dwelling, the internal feel is of much more – created by double height spaces and a gallery / landing area. All of this is finished in a very traditional rural feel – which truly compliments its natural surroundings.
As a replacement dwelling for a very prominent farm dwelling, the design of this house held its own challenges. The detailed brief provided by the client resulted in a proposal to create a building of two very different appearances. The main body of the design would be a large 2 storey, classically designed farm house, with a balanced appearance including a central curved stairway. In addition to this, and at ground floor only would then be a contemporary wing containing kitchen, snug area and open plan dining. The space created between these two elements then serves as an informal / open plan dining area off the kitchen as well as the main entrance foyer. From here a direct link to the rear garden space allows the open plan living areas to spill out onto the patio area. Whilst the design will be a new build in its entirety, it will possibly have the appearance of a contemporary extension onto an older, more classical farm dwelling – thus respecting the formality of the existing house, and at the same time creating a much more modern living experience for our client. This house has been given full planning approval and work has already commenced on site. Images of the completed project will be uploaded when complete.
Victoria Gate Dwelling
Having had a dwelling designed already approved on this site, our client approached us requesting that an improved layout and appearance be developed in order to further exploit the fantastic views across the River Foyle and beyond. Since these views (and natural sun path) are to the rear of the dwelling, all the main living areas and bedrooms were placed here, allowing the frontage to contain study space, toilet / bathroom areas, integral garage and circulation space. The design is a split level type with 3 levels in total and on what is a slightly more restricted site than most in this development; we have managed to achieve the maximum size of dwelling whilst not compromising the outdoor amenity space or privacy of the adjoining properties. The changes proposed to the design internally also reflect on the external appearance, with a zinc canopy introduced to bring a subtle but important feature element to the main entrance of the house. The design has been fully approved by planning service and work has commenced on site.
A narrow site combined with a brief for a large family dwelling resulted in this particular dwelling to consist of 2 separate wings, with a central circulation ‘link’ between. To one wing would be placed the kitchen and open plan dining and living, and to the other a more formal reception space and study room. On the upper floors the bedrooms / bathroom and ensuites would be spread across the the wings. By splaying the plan layout on the site, all reception / family rooms will be able to avail of the prominent long distance views towards the Sperrin Mountains, whilst corner windows will allow a lot of natural sunlight to penetrate. Having taken this from inception, we have now gained full planning permission for the dwelling and hope to commence construction during 2015.
This dwelling was undoubtedly one of the most challenging ever undertaken by ADMS Architects. Given that the existing house, a Grade B1 listed property, was on the Buildings At Risk Northern Ireland list (BARNI), great care was to be attributed to the reinstatement of the house, so as to restore its original status. In addition to this, the client provided a brief for a new extension which was to be of a contemporary nature. Through detailed discussions with Listed Buildings a design was developed to both meet all aspects of the client brief, but satisfy the criteria required for such a delicate scenario of new addition to a listed property. The result is a house that is unique in its setting, layout and overall appearance. Dedication on the client’s behalf in restoring the existing house in every detail possible, has proved that saving building fabric such as this is a worthwhile endeavour. Whilst some internal alterations (approved by listed buildings) were carried out, these have only served to improve the dwelling to a modern say standard. The listed house has been finished externally with lime render, cast iron rainwater goods, authentic slate roof and pine windows, whilst the new addition is of contemporary materials (smooth render, planar glazing, and aluminium windows) so as to allow the building to read historically in terms of age. A truly one-off, bespoke dwelling which has restored a property of great historic value – It is a design we are extremely proud of.
Having worked alongside a planning consultant to gain outline approval for this dwelling, ADMS Architects developed a house design based on the clients brief. A relatively modest sized dwelling, the basis of the design was how living areas would take advantage of both the views from the elevated site, as well as the sunlight throughout the day. Main bedrooms for the inhabitant enjoy the morning sun, and share the best of the available views, with only the circulation space / hallways being located to the northern side of the dwelling. An ‘L’ shaped plan allows for minimal circulation space, and upon entering the house, the user is made instantly aware of the views out through both the hallway and living room glazing. Having occupied the dwelling for some months now, the client is extremely happy with the design of the dwelling, in both a practical sense and having gained an overall improved living standard, due to the layout being designed around their requirements. ADMS Architects carried out a full supervision and certification role on this dwelling. (Photo images taken during construction – updated photos will be posted when dwelling is fully complete).
Although located between the busy seaside towns of Portstewart and Portrush, the design of this particular replacement dwelling still had to adhere to the principles of the planning service rural design guide, since the site in fact remains on green belt land. Without doubt, this site offered some of the best coastal views of all the projects ADMS have undertaken, and this has influenced the design very heavily. The site, although idyllic in terms of its location, still had its challenges – such as access and parking, designing in a garden area that would avail of the sun path, and layout of the plan so as to make the utmost of the views available. The resulting design was approved by our client on the first attempt, which was not something that even they expected to happen! It has since been fully approved by planning, but has not yet commenced on site. Updated images of the finished result will be added should this happen.
This site was the last remaining freehold portion of land in the locality of Beone beach, and actually sits immediately to the rear of the sand dunes of the main beach. Whilst not facing onto the beach itself, the site enjoys views of the prominent Binevenagh Mountain to the east. The dwelling was designed as a holiday home and remains simple, linear and unassuming from the external appearance. However, internally the roof voids of the main living space are opened up to be vaulted type, as well as the plan being very open between kitchen, dining and living areas. Combined with large glazing to the corner which has the best aspect of the mountain, the living spaces are filled with natural light in what has the appearance of being quite a large space – The perfect space for weekend social and family gatherings! Three very adequate bedrooms with ensuite are nestled to the rear and the gardens / landscaping and driveway / access were all given equal consideration as part of the project as a whole.
As a replacement dwelling, our client had requested a very practical design which would make the most of this sites large garden views and sun path, so as to have as much natural light as possible within the main living spaces. A strong family base, this home ADMS were briefed that this home should be both a place of social interaction, as well as providing quiet study spaces, playroom/s and integral storage spaces within its floor plan. All this was achieved by the design. In addition to this, it was our suggestion that the existing stone barn buildings, which had fallen into some disrepair, within the site be retained and the siting of the new dwelling be placed so that a rear courtyard would be created. This has also now been realised and has proved a worthy element of the completed dwelling.