14 Princes Street
Dromore
Northern Ireland
BT25 1AY

+44 (0) 2892 698424

© RE Quinn Architects Ltd. 2020. All rights reserved.

Chelmsford Avenue Larne

Distinctive new build seaside residence tailored for a growing family.

Front of the dwelling | REQA Architect Design | New bespoke house urban residential | Chelmsford Avenue Larne
REQA was commissioned to design this replacement dwelling which occupies a site in a quiet residential area of Larne.  Unfortunately, the original house had fallen into a significant state of visual and structural disrepair, and the place had become overgrown.
 
Finding the line between reuse and refurbishment or demolish and rebuild can be tricky. There are many factors to weigh up, but in this case, the pragmatic approach won.
 
Even though the original house could not be refurbished safely to modern standards, it was not without some character. It Included some unique design quirks subtly incorporated into the proposed design.  Additionally, some items (for example, the fireplace) salvaged during demolition, were carefully recycled and provide Interesting features in the completed dwelling. Our approach was to reinstate with respect paid to what went before.
Double height hall staircase space | REQA Architect Design | New bespoke house urban residential | Chelmsford Avenue Larne

The stunning double height entrance hall and staircase is enhanced by flooding the space with natural light.

Aerial view of the house overlooking the back with the sea in the background | REQA Architect Design | New bespoke house urban residential | Chelmsford Avenue Larne

The unique characteristics of the neighbourhood and surrounding buildings informs the decisions and design ideas.

Finding the line between reuse & refurbishment or demolish & rebuild can be tricky. There are many factors to weigh up, but in this case, the pragmatic approach won.

We were fortunate to work with a client who knew exactly what they wanted to add to the brief while leaving flexibility to introduce concepts appropriate to the site context. The solution is respectful of not only the original dwelling but also to the established rhythm of the streetscape, yet also providing a contemporary living space for a young family.
 
The form of the building, narrow frontage, traditional features, everyday materials, fits perfectly into the streetscape and disguises that nature of what lies within the dwelling and to the rear.  The entrance gives way to a welcoming 2-storey hallway flooded with natural light from the side and above, with the salvaged fireplace and a well-crafted staircase providing immediate interest.  There is a formal living space giving the desired view to the sea
 
Still, it is the open plan living, dining and kitchen area that dominates the majority of the ground floor to the rear.  This informal family space, with significant windows, opens to a raised deck area.
Living room with garden doors | REQA Architect Design | New bespoke house urban residential | Chelmsford Avenue Larne
The clients clear understanding and involvement throughout the process (as well as sympathetic furnishing and décorating) ensures the design success of the dwelling. The high standard of construction quality has revitalised a portion of land that was a blight in the local context.
Ryan Kennedy
REQA Project Architect
Back of house | REQA Architect Design | New bespoke house urban residential | Chelmsford Avenue Larne

The existing boundary structures, filled with history and character, enhanced the private garden area.

A private walled garden steps down to the rear of the site. This was sympathetically brought back to life by the client to create a safe, secure and private family environment. Looking back to the dwelling from the garden, the rear elevation is modern in appearance. The inclusion of the storey high projecting 'fin' wall conceals the bin space and services alley and assisting the dwelling in stepping down to the garden as well as defining the decked area.
 
The first floor gives way to bedrooms and bathrooms with a gallery space overlooking the entrance hall.  The master bedroom overlooks the private garden space with the guest bedroom availing of a sea view.  The choice of materials, lighter render contrasting with the darker window frames, along with the client's bold choice of front door colour give the building a real presence while remaining inoffensive to the surrounding properties.
Aerial view of the house looking straight down | REQA Architect Design | New bespoke house urban residential | Chelmsford Avenue Larne

Data

Project

A new-build urban infill residence in a seaside location

Location

Chelmsford Ave, Larne

Client

Private

Year

2015

Scale

212 m²

Status

Complete

Typology

Residential
New Build

Photography / Imagery

REQA

Latest Projects