Boatsheds Takapuna, Auckland
SGA with Rachael rush
On a constrained, compact urban site, a stones throw from
Takapuna Beach, the three-stepped gables of these black 'boatsheds'
appropriately reference our boating and beach culture. The sliding
forms reveal a solution beyond the standard connotations of a home,
a bespoke incubator for the clients' lifestyle.
The corner site, challenged by two 5m front yards and the blunt
presence of a three-storey neighbour hard on the North-West
boundary, stimulated an approach of layered complexity with ample
transparency to capture light, sun and glimpses of the pohutukawa
and baiting ocean.
Simplicity of the exterior form is contrasted by the highly
crafted timber interior, exhibiting the skilled artistry of the
builder. A diverse succession of multi-connected spaces create a
threaded flow of movement, whilst each maintains a distinct and
sequestered quality. Supportive of the client's active lifestyle
the functional spaces develop from the bottom up, from sports
equipment lockers to outdoor bathing and working laundry to the
casual and open living spaces with strong connection to the
outdoors. This multi-leveled home achieves an extensive programme
on the modest 480m2 site.
Thermal mass floors
and vertical blades are incorporated to support passive heating and
cooling whilst the outdoor pond cools and conditions air before
entering the living spaces and discharging through the volume of
the void. Solar panels are used to heat water and the layered sun
and privacy screens are climate responsive to provide further
The house opens and
closes in response to shifts in weather and programme, with walls
that lift, fall, slide, fold, shut down or disappear. This is a
house with intent to engage the viewer, the viewed and the operator
with sense and intrigue.