Architects Feix&Merlin have completed a private residential extension to one of the last original warehouse buildings remaining in east London.
The existing building was a three-storey warehouse building, plus basement, previously used as an art gallery with live/work accommodation. The new owners wanted to develop the property with a view to transform the building into their new home, still retaining live/work status to create a new roof extension to house an artist’s studio and an office. The roof terrace above offers insane views of the City to the south.
The extension was set back from the front slightly to create a new balcony to the artist’s studio, and set flush to the rear of the office space creating a dramatic full-height, full-width glazed elevation taking in the breathtaking outlook.
Two new internal staircases were created; one up from the existing second floor to the new third floor as well as the staircase up to the roof terrace. A new glazed panel in the roof was created, not only to provide access to the roof terrace, but also to allow daylight to flood down the stairwell and provide natural light to flood into the artist’s studio. The proposals also included improved access to the existing second-floor roof terrace, as well as other general internal refurbishment throughout.
Although the existing building is not listed, it is situated in a conservation area and thus crucial for Feix&Merlin to work closely with the conservation department to develop a contextual approach to the aesthetic of the architecture and materiality of the external appearance.
The chosen materials were purposefully simple, high quality and complementary to the surrounding architecture, featuring a full-height, Crittall-style steel window screen to the rear, as well Crittal windows to the front, with brick walls and a new slate roof.
“We worked in a collaborative way with the local planning authority and the conservation area team to ensure a sensitive approach to the architecture, materials and massing but also in a creative way to ensure that we could still give our clients the extra space they needed. The glazing at the rear of the extension is detailed in a way that allows the view across the city to be opened up as much as possible; the glazing sails past the parapet which is set back, avoiding a bulky parapet fascia in the rear elevation, as well as creating a light interface between glazing and roof structure” - Julia Feix, of Feix&Merlin.
View Feix&Merlin on the Domus Nova Architect Guide
Feix&Merlin, Unit 40, South City Court, 52 Peckham Grove, London SE15; feixandmerlin.com
All photography by Simon Maxwell