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PORTAL WAY

GARNHAM STREET

BRUNEL WORKS

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NEW CROSS ROAD

FOREST ROAD

THE PAPER MARKET

ST. OLAVS

HOLME

39 ST JAMES’S STREET

MAY GURNEY

ELM FARM

Four barns. Five star accommodation. The most sustainable approach is to make use of what you already have.

Arkley, Barnet.

Elm Farm Barns represented a significant opportunity to convert and reconstruct the four barns into one private dwelling with new minimal glazed links. The design of the connecting elements are recessed to enhance the definition between old and new both internally and externally. ‘Lightweight’ glazed link connects the barns ensuring the proposed massing feels subservient to the existing barns.

Agriculture is the primary aspect of the site. It is therefore important to celebrate this aspect of the site through providing clear lines of the site between the barns to the tree line behind. This helps maintain the distinct farmstead nature of the building cluster. Openings within the facade along the northern and southern elevations increase connectivity from living spaces into the landscape.

The facade design looks to retain the simple and elegant rationale of the existing barn. Honest and simple agricultural principles of regular rhythm to the envelope allow a contemporary and subtle response to the building’s history whilst bringing a new lease of life to the structures themselves.

Subtle changes in the architectural grids allow for the facade to have subtle differences between each barn whilst still retaining a clear language of sitting as a clear set of four. The glazed links look to offer as minimal a connection as possible allowing for maximum openness to the landscape beyond.

The idea is for the building to reflect their history and therefore the barn vernacular remains present. Expressed timber fins create a softened form that sits subtly in the landscape whilst giving a nod to the sustainable principles of the scheme. This is enhanced by a strong horizontal datum which grounds the barns and connects them to the landscape in a manner that references the horizontality of the surrounding landscape.

Key Aspect – The internal layout were designed from the outset to frame key view out from the property such as  the arrival view when entering from the existing barn doors.

Sustainability – An efficient environmental performance was at the forefront of the design, with innovative detailing and products used to create an energy efficient home that would perform greater than the previously limited performance of the existing agricultural barns.

The concrete plinth in solid construction with a wooden construction on top of it ties in with the archetype of a traditional, gabled, agricultural building. The vertical, constructive wooden supports give the building an immense presence and make it appear grounded at the same time.

The house is considered a mirror of the character of its inhabitants inside and the environment outside: simple, in a clear design language and with local materials. The dark wood paneling and the light tone plinth serve as a reference point for the typical rural atmosphere of the area.

Project Info

STATUS
PLANNING APPROVED, 2023
TYPE
PRIVATE HOME
LOCATION
BOROUGH
BARNET
CLIENT
AREA
450m²

The Team