Skygarden House by Dubbeldam Architecture + Design has received the Second Award at Global Architecture & Design Awards. Global Architecture & Design Awards is the annual Awards hosted by the renowned platform Rethinking The Future. After the consecutive success in hosting Awards for five years, RTF in its sixth year had launched GADA with even more Categories and Awards. Studios from smallest to largest from across the world have won under different categories. Part Winners have included renowned studios like BIG & DIALOG Architects, HOK, Perkins Eastman, UNStudio, Aecom, Gensler, Henning Larsen, LMN Architects, DLR Group, AHR, Page etc. Re-Thinking the Future founded to create a new window on international trends in architecture and design that looks for radical solutions for present-day problems. It is a hub of services for architecture and design that was established to bring out the most creative and innovative projects in the field of architecture and hence create an interactive educational platform of the highest standards.
To know more about the GADA 2018 and RTF visit: Global Architecture & Design Awards 2018
Situated on a narrow lot in an older Toronto neighbourhood, the Skygarden House provides outdoor living spaces on multiple levels to address the owners’ desire for a better connection to the home’s natural surroundings. The owners used to spend their weekends at their country home, located next to a stream and surrounded by trees; they wanted their new home in the city to mimic this bucolic experience in an urban environment, and they wanted their home to be as sustainable as possible.
Although the house is only 2,420 square feet, it feels much larger—its rooms expand beyond the interior to a series of useable outdoor spaces that enrich the domestic experience, each with its own unique character and varying level of privacy. The rear yard is landscaped and features a generously scaled thermally-treated ash wood deck, and a few steps down, another zone defined by granite pavers is planted with a row of honey locust trees that offer dappled light and shade in summer. Even the existing porch at the front of the house is remade into a private outdoor dining room enclosed by a five-foot-high wood screen, extending the private realm into the public arena. On the third floor, two outdoor spaces provide green respite.
An exposed roof deck at the back of the house has plentiful views over the neighbourhood and into the extensive green canopy surrounding the house. At the front of the house, half of the master bedroom is given over to an intimate exterior space clad in the warm ash, with a recessed planter and an opening carved into the roof for natural light, access to rainwater, and ample views of green. Intimately connected to the master suite, this “skygarden” functions as a unique outdoor room, open to the sky, sun, wind and stars.
The complete overhaul of the house resulted in a significant reduction in its ecological footprint. To achieve the most efficient methods of heating, cooling and lighting while minimizing costs, the mechanical and electrical systems are integrated with passive design strategies. Highly efficient infloor radiant heating, high velocity cooling systems, superior insulation, and energy-saving fixtures and appliances were introduced, and combined with passive sustainable systems to optimize energy use in all seasons. The open plan is organized around a central vertical volume containing the sculptural open-riser stair.
A large operable skylight above draws natural light deep into the interior and improves natural ventilation through stack effect, reducing the need for air conditioning. The abundance of glazing coupled with the house’s east-west orientation results in plenty of natural light at all hours of the day, decreasing the need for artificial lighting.
Site vegetation screens the west façade to mitigate glare and excessive heat gain in summer months, but in winter, when the leaves are gone, solar gain from low sun is encouraged to help heat the house. Skygarden House is a modern home that considers the context of the street and carefully reimagines its interior spaces and their relationship to the outdoors.