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Ström Architects unwraps £750k cantilevered Dorset house


Ström Architects has taken the wraps off this £750,000 house in Swanage, Dorset, which features a cantilever

The single-storey 205m² scheme, dubbed The Quest, replaced a 1917 bungalow on the woodland plot which overlooks Durlston Country Park.

According to the Lymington-based practice, the art-loving clients wanted an ’elegant’ house for their retirement which also met the needs of their disabled daughter.

A spokesperson said: ’The house exemplifies our belief that simplicity and honesty of construction underlie good design. The initial concept and design drivers are instantly recognisable in the building, and we worked to retain this clarity of intent without adding anything unnecessary to the building.’


The architect’s view

‘The site is heavily wooded and enjoys a beautiful south aspect with a view over the Durlston Country Park. We early established the advantages of a single-storey building which helped froma planning point of view, as the proposed building is no higher than the existing and it allowed a simple arrangement of space suiting the clients’ brief of a house for their ‘retirement’. At the same time, the design reduces the visual impact from across the valley when looking back towards the house.

The sloping site with mature trees very much dictated the positioning of the dwelling. Vehicular access is via the front of the property and we separated vehicles and entrance from the landscaped garden through a retaining wall that defines different levels. This arrangement also ensures cars are hidden out of sight, so that the view south is maximised and free of cars and other clutter.

‘The single storey house, cantilevers over the retaining wall and provides protection to the car park and entrance. The large cantilever of the house is achieved through two concrete planes, the floor and roof acting together like a space beam. The concrete structure is then in-filled with simple timber dry-lining, leaving the edges of the concrete frame visible externally.

‘The external retaining walls and chimney breast will be in local Purbeck stone, anchoring the house in its location.’ 

Stromarchitects thequest martingardner 03

Source: Martin Gardner

Project data

Architects: Ström Architects
Location: West Durlston Lane, Swanage, Dorset
Type of Project: one-off house
Structural Engineers: Barton Engineers, Calcinotto Consulting Engineers
Project Architect: Magnus Ström
Client: Charles and Pennie Denton
Funding: Private
Tender date: June 2014
Start on site date: August 2014
Contract duration: 12 months
Gross internal floor area: 205m²
Form of contract and/or procurement: traditional, intermediate with CD
Total cost: £750,000 (including landscaping)
Cost per m²: £3,650m²
Quantity surveyor: Stockdale
Main contractor: Matrod Frampton
Landscape architects: Ross Allan Designs

First floor plan strom quest in swanage

First floor plan strom quest in swanage


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