The Green House wins RIBA Architecture Award

05/06/19 11:38am by


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The Green House, a HartQS project, is one of three 'Grand Design' properties in Devon that have scooped prestigious architecture awards. It has won an RIBA South West Award 2019 from a shortlist of 14 projects and 48 overall entries.

Situated near Tiverton, The Green House, designed by Totnes-based David Sheppard Architects is a crafted building created by an intuitive mind. It appears on the landscape as an organism that has moulded itself to its environment.

Chair of the jury Yuli Cadney-Toh said: "The first sight of the building is of a triangular wedge placed on a very steep slope and on approach the dramatic green roof sweeps down seemingly to offer a welcoming hand. A discreet opening on the side of the larch clad walls allows entry into an unexpected dramatic high space within, with vistas and shapes in many directions. The space draws you in.

This main living space of the house has slid down the hill to reach for the trees, where the catkins brushes against the glass. This piano noble has wrap round full height glazing with deep window seats perched at branch level looking down onto the swimming ponds below and out across the distant fields.

The plan and roof form is freed from the rectilinear, and the flow of space up the staircase to a library window seat is delightful. The use of fine plaster and ply veneer is restrained and balanced, highlighted with spalted wood stairs and dining table from timbers from the estate. The bedrooms are arranged for privacy, with simple thoughtful joinery detailing.

The external experience of the house changes as you move around it, there being no attributable front or back. It makes an intriguing bent shape on plan, and together with its falling roof makes it impossible to pin down. It is at the same time dynamic and in repose. A restrained palette of materials, of larch boarding from the estate and glazing in dark window frames, brings out the forms to good effect.

From below at lake level, it is a tall tower house standing with the trees whilst from uphill it is lower than eye level. Bat boxes are integrated on the side. This house abounds with character and personality.

A masterful play of shaping with land, trees and water that might well prove to be timeless."

Robin Hart provided pre and post contract Quantity Surveying services including cost estimates at design stage, drawing up the tender documentation and contracts, monitoring and assessing valuations and variations and providing financial reports to the client. Additionally, hartQS assisted and advised on liquidation issues connected with the project including cost tracking and dealing with various enhanced financial considerations.

The Green House will now be considered for a highly-coveted RIBA National Award announced on 27 June. The shortlist for the RIBA Stirling Prize for the UKs best new building of the year will be drawn from the RIBA National Award-winning projects later in the year.

Photography Joakim Boren Photography

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