Architecture

Andrew Maynard Architects turns a house into a village

Andrew Maynard Architects turn...
Like the Tardis, Tower House is small on the outside and large internally. (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Like the Tardis, Tower House is small on the outside and large internally. (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
View 46 Images
Tower House was completed in 2014 (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Tower House was completed in 2014 (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Tower House is located in Alphington, Victoria, Australia (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Tower House is located in Alphington, Victoria, Australia (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
The kids working in mom's library (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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The kids working in mom's library (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
The library (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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The library (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
While the back garden is fenced off, the front garden has been turned into a communal vegetable garden (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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While the back garden is fenced off, the front garden has been turned into a communal vegetable garden (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
While the back garden is fenced off, the front garden has been turned into a communal vegetable garden (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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While the back garden is fenced off, the front garden has been turned into a communal vegetable garden (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Locals are welcome to help themselves to the veggies or chip in and do some work (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Locals are welcome to help themselves to the veggies or chip in and do some work (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
"Australia is wide and flat. As a result our homes are wide and flat," says the firm. It was thus decided to build a series of taller volumes (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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"Australia is wide and flat. As a result our homes are wide and flat," says the firm. It was thus decided to build a series of taller volumes (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
With the novel extension, the home looks like a miniature village from the outside (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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With the novel extension, the home looks like a miniature village from the outside (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Naturally, the best bits of the house are saved for the kids (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Naturally, the best bits of the house are saved for the kids (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Inside Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Inside Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Like the Tardis, Tower House is small on the outside and large internally. (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Like the Tardis, Tower House is small on the outside and large internally. (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
The kitchen area (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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The kitchen area (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
There's a lot going on with Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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There's a lot going on with Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Shot of the back garden (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Shot of the back garden (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
The kitchen includes an area for the kids to climb (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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The kitchen includes an area for the kids to climb (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
The kitchen and dining area (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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The kitchen and dining area (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Shot of the back garden, from the side (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Shot of the back garden, from the side (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Tower House is small on the outside and large internally (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Tower House is small on the outside and large internally (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Inside Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Inside Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Inside Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Inside Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
The study room includes a floor-to-ceiling bookcase (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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The study room includes a floor-to-ceiling bookcase (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
The hanging net in the kids study (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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The hanging net in the kids study (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Large sliding doors help ensure passive cooling (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Large sliding doors help ensure passive cooling (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Inside Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Inside Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Tower House was completed in 2014 (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Tower House was completed in 2014 (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Tower House is located in Alphington, Victoria, Australia (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Tower House is located in Alphington, Victoria, Australia (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
"Australia is wide and flat. As a result our homes are wide and flat," says the firm. It was thus decided to build a series of taller volumes (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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"Australia is wide and flat. As a result our homes are wide and flat," says the firm. It was thus decided to build a series of taller volumes (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Tower House, seen at night from street level (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Tower House, seen at night from street level (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Tower House, seen at night (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Tower House, seen at night (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Tower House, seen at night (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Tower House, seen at night (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Construction photo of Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Construction photo of Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Construction photo of Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Construction photo of Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Construction photo of Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Construction photo of Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Aerial photo of Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Aerial photo of Tower House (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
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Architectural drawing of Tower House (Image: Andrew Maynard Architects)
View gallery - 46 images

We've already witnessed Australian firm Andrew Maynard Architects' flair for the unusual with the Cut Paw Paw house. Tower House sees the practice up the ante by turning a typical weatherboard home in Alphington, Victoria, into a delightful "village" comprising a number of tower-like buildings.

Built for a young family with twin boys, there's a lot going on with Tower House – and a lot to like, too. During the renovation and extension of an existing modestly-sized suburban home, a simple flat extension was shunned in favor of five slim tower-like volumes that are connected on the inside and resemble a village on a tiny scale from outside. The original home includes two children's bedrooms, bathroom and living spaces, while the new additions feature a studio, bedroom, bathroom, kitchen, and a dining area.

"Tower House is a village externally and a home internally," says Andrew Maynard Architects. "The house defies logic as the exterior appears to be a series of small structures, while internally the spaces and functions are large and connected. Like the Tardis, it’s small on the outside and large internally."

The hanging net in the kids study (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)
The hanging net in the kids study (Photo: Andrew Maynard Architects)

Dad received a small astroturfed getaway nook during the extension, while mom now has a library. The most striking addition is saved for the kids though, and comprises a study room with a floor-to-ceiling bookcase and large hanging net. The architectural notes also make mention of a simple tannoy system comprising tin cans connected with string.

Another particularly nice touch for the home is the front garden, which has been given over to a communal vegetable plot. Locals are welcome to help themselves to the veggies, and can also chip in and do some work if so inclined. The back garden is fenced but can be opened to the outside.

Tower House was designed to optimize passive solar gain in a bid to reduce the need for mechanical heating, and features large windows along the southern boundary. The need for air-conditioning is reduced via carefully-thought windows which offer natural ventilation. A retractable fabric awning can also be used to add more shade when needed.

Tower House was completed in 2014.

Source: Andrew Maynard Architects

View gallery - 46 images
1 comment
jeffbloggs
All the individual small buildings exponentially increase the exterior surface that in turn increases heating and cooling loses and gains, plus it increases construction costs as there are no shared walls or roofs. A square or double storey house has less external area than a rectangular single storey of equal floor area. Geometry 1 on 1. A good way to get less for more though. Fail IMHO.