East 3rd House
EAST VAN, YO
The present project is the renovation of and addition to a modest house in Vancouver. Located in the Grandview-Woodland neighbourhood of Vancouver’s east end, the original house was representative of the houses constructed during the early decades of the last century: poorly insulated, disconnected from the street, and with little natural light. The new owners - young professionals with modest funds and a baby on the way - looked to transform the house to suit a contemporary lifestyle with an eye to sustainable building.
The most important operation was the simple act of lifting the existing house to make livable the ground floor.
While the project contains numerous sustainable strategies like low-VOC paints, high-efficiency fixtures, and in future may include on-site water reclamation, and solar hot-water, the most important operation was the simple act of lifting the existing house to make livable the ground floor. The simplicity of their choice belies the magnitude of its effect as it did more than bring natural light and air deep into the ground floor; constrained by the unique severity of scarcity and speculation in Vancouver’s real estate market, preserving more than 60% of the existing house’s shell not only saved construction costs directly, but also made for faster approvals with the City.
1 + 2 = 4
The architectural operation here was to - almost literally - conjure space from nothing. By dramatically raising the upper portion half house, a meager basement is transformed into generous communal family room and kitchen.
LISTEN TO YOUR CLIENTS
Our clients were central to this project - more than just for their patience and tenacity, but also their self-awareness and design acumen.
"Maybe it’s more prose than poetry, but Carscadden’s description of the project as “beautiful decisions that fit within the rules” is as apt a description of a successful urban renovation as is likely to be found. Leave it to the client to supply the poetry. “There’s nothing about it that I’d change,” says Cossever (client). “We got it all."
Jim Sutherland, Western Living Magazine