Redland House / Emmett Russell Architects


Redland House / Emmett Russell Architects

© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus+ 26

© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus

Text description provided by the architects. Redland is a Victorian suburb of Bristol which was built on the hills north of the Old Town during the last decades of the 19th century. The initial development of the suburb coincided with the construction of a new rail network across the city.

© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus

The site for this project sits on triangular land between a terrace of Victorian houses and the adjacent railway embankment. The house uses the unusual geometry of the site to create a dynamic series of spaces over three floors. Each floor of the building approaches the surrounding cityscape in a different way and frames views in different directions.

On the ground floor, the house extends towards the rear and opens to maximize the connection with the garden. The open plan living, dining, and kitchen combine the geometry of the railroad tracks with that of the adjacent patio to create a space that swings around a covered patio. Upstairs, two bedrooms share a balcony facing south towards the railway platform. The master bedroom on the second floor has its own west facing balcony which overlooks the street and the evening sun.

© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
Second floor plan
Second floor plan
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus

The project brief called for a low-energy family home and it was designed by Bristol Architects Emmett Russell Architects to address energy use issues in several ways. The timber frame construction is highly insulated with recycled newspaper cellulose insulation. In order to provide an additional thickness of insulation, the walls were constructed using a feedback lattice to increase the available depth.

© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus

All windows are triple glazed and the casing has been detailed to provide excellent airtightness. The embodied energy of the building has also been minimized through choices of wood structure, wood fiber cladding panels and cellulose insulation.

© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus

Externally, the house is finished with a breathable coating over fibreboard for the upper levels. This refers to the plaster finish of adjacent houses. On the ground floor, a light colored brick provides a textured plinth to the building that provides a level of sturdiness where the building needs it most.

© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus

The shape of the house’s roof echoes the gables of the adjacent houses, extending the shape and rhythm of the gable terrace. This creates a series of vaulted ceilings inside that give height and drama to the rooms on the second floor of the house. A carefully designed oak and steel staircase forms a vertical spine to the building that connects the double height entrance hall on the ground floor to the arched landing at the top of the house.

© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus
© Craig Auckland, Fotohaus



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