Matthews McDonald Architects

Roseberry Street


photos - Robert Frith

This new three level home is located on a corner, narrow, sloping site at the east end of South Perth, Western Australia, and has sweeping panoramic views of the Swan River and Perth City, from Kings Park to the Darling Ranges.

The owners had lived at the address for a number of years however the existing house had significant construction defects and was poorly planned. The brief by the client was to demolish the existing house and rebuild a comfortable family home using steel and glass.

The architectural response creates a house with strong connections between the internal and external spaces, and where each room takes advantage of the spectacular views. In contrast to traditional Australian suburban houses, this home wraps around a courtyard forming the main outdoor space. A gallery space links the two building forms. The basement contains the service spaces, with living and sleeping on the entry and upper levels.

To minimise energy consumption and environmental impact, the house incorporates passive systems and initiatives such as single zone planning, compartmentalisation and double-glazing, along with a considerable investment in active systems. As part of this commitment, photovoltaic collectors, rainwater harvesting, mechanical shading devices and a hybrid air-conditioning/ventilation system have been integrated into the home.

For the owners, the house is the outcome of spending many years working and living in the harsh environment of the northern parts of Western Australia that represents their love of the beauty of the landscape with its wide open spaces, colours and strength.