Green Pike House. An adaptive re-use of two existing buildings reimagined as an eco-tourism development in Bingie, five-hours south of Sydney.

Conceived as a site for special gatherings, yoga retreats, workshops and weddings - as well as the occasional weekender for themselves - our clients wanted a house that would comfortably house 15 whilst offering an experience quite different to city living. The design had to embody the spirit of camping, the spirit of 'roughing it' but at the same time called for a kind of stripped-back almost monastic decadence.

We have worked directly and aggressively with two existing structures - a timber barn and brick project home - gutting them, lopping off roofs, cutting large holes here and there whilst adding a few new elements and systems to create a family of pavilions linked by covered ways and courtyards. Staying here, guests will have no choice but to embrace the outdoors; the rhythm of internal, external, internal, external rooms experienced as spatial inhalations and exhalations that punctuate movement, directly referencing landscape and the outdoors.

It's almost a relief to work with existing buildings that have little intrinsic quality meaning the architecture is not searching for an appropriate language between new and old nor is it looking for a seamless synthesis. On the contrary, there is a single mindedness about our own project whilst seeking to foreground and respond directly to the precious aspects of site, providing a raw and exhilarating living experience and not a series of contemplative set pieces or framed, detached views. As Richard Leplastrier might say, 'living' is a verb and many of his projects have been touchstones for this project as has Utzon's Bayview (unrealised) and Mallorcan houses.

The key elements will be a family of monumental spotted gum beams, concrete ring beams that stabilise the old structure, spotted gum sliding doors and screens and a new concrete pavilion. We're really excited about this one.

Status: Under construction. Stage 1 is complete. Stage 2 is due for completion 2019

Sustainable Design Features:

-salvaging and re-working the existing barn and the slab and external walls of the existing project home
-hydronic in-slab heating in new concrete topping slab throughout
-pv solar array
-100K litre water harvesting
-passive solar design (deep winter sun penetration whilst at the same time shielding the mid-summer sun)
-secure high-level north-easterly cross-ventilation (so you can cross-ventilate without compromising security) 
-recycled and salvaged masonry
-materials were chosen for their durability, integrity and thermal properties
-Class 1 Australian timbers from renewable sources

Staff: Eoghan Lewis & Jason Goh