Forrest Avenue

locationKingston Park
floor area472 m2
completion2019

Set amidst dense vegetation on the slopes of a rocky hill in Kingston Park, this Finesse Built home is a captivating sight. The home protrudes from the ground, providing panoramic views of Saint Vincent’s Gulf to the west and the stunning metropolitan beaches of Adelaide to the north.

The home is accessed via a suspended bridge that starts in the City of Marion and concludes at the garage entry in the City of Holdfast. Despite the slope of 36.2 degrees limiting the design to a small footprint, the home, split over five levels, remarkably achieves architect David Bagshaw’s vision of minimal impact on the earth below.

This home is nothing short of an engineering feat and a true masterstroke in design and construction. The complexity of the site and the many challenges it presented demanded endless creativity and quality craftsmanship, which resulted in bestowing the enviable coastal lifestyle. This home has a striking presence on a remarkable site and undeniably asserts itself through sheer volume and intricacy.

 

Environmental Sustainability

Suspended off the ground, this home encompassed many designed and considered elements to aid in environmental sustainability. Comfort Plus glazing and concrete floors were used for heat capture and were accompanied with shading devices to manage winter and summer solar access. There was a high insulation specification, with heavy Earthwool insulation externally and internally, for passive control of temperature fluctuations, combined with the Formcraft party wall and roof blanket. The internal areas were zoned for independent heating and cooling, and windows were placed to take full advantage of breezes to promote cross-flow ventilation. The air-conditioning plant was placed in a southern under croft to reduce heat load on units.

Within the home, a four-level open riser Victorian Ash staircase adds to the architectural complexity. The fifth level of closed risers with concealed stringers enhances the structure’s shadow-play, adding depth and intrigue to the interior.

The kitchen is a dramatic spectacle, featuring a black herringbone mosaic tile splashback. The high, 3.5m raked ceiling, combined with raw materials such as timber and concrete, enhances the spacious and inviting atmosphere.

In the main living area, wall-hung timber cabinets over a monolithic concrete plinth enhance the raw aesthetic. Large expanses of glass flood the space with light, illuminating the functional, entertaining space that opens onto one of four Spotted Gum timber outdoor decks.

The second level houses the bedrooms and bathrooms. Thoughtful placement of glazing accentuates views, maximises light penetration, and promotes cross-flow ventilation. The master bedroom, with underfloor heating in the ensuite, is a luxurious sanctuary designed for ultimate comfort and aesthetics.

The house’s exterior showcases impressive structural elements, including flying shade screens. It rests on two suspended polished concrete floors, accessed via a structural bridge made of 32 individually designed DeltaCore panels, demonstrating the house’s innovative engineering.

The home was constructed in stages, building the bottom level and up to connect the home to the bridge and roadway, followed by the external cladding, before turning around and building back down to the lower levels.

Enhancing the home’s intricate architectural design, strip lighting is integrated into the base of structural beams. This adds a sophisticated touch to the design, illuminating the structure in a captivating glow.