Project Feature

The (Gr)ancillary Dwelling by Crump Architects: Connected Yet Independent Elderly Living

Hobart, TAS, Australia

Rose Onans

Perched on a hillside, atop the carport of an existing residence, the (Gr)ancillary Dwelling by Crump Architects is an alternative to elderly care, providing a connected yet independent home for much-loved grandmother.

Silhouetted against the trees and sky, the structure is a bold yet simple contemporary design, the vertical dark timber cladding creating a visual connection with the existing home while allowing the building to recede into the hillside. An entry bridge provides direct access from the street, and a glazed connecting bridge integrates the (Gr)ancillary Dwelling with the house below.

The (gr)ancillary Dwelling is a bold and contemporary yet modest home for a much-loved grandmother of the family whose home sits below.

The new structure, thus, marks a juncture, the departure point upwards in juxtaposition to the horizontality emphasised in the existing residence. Through this simple, yet deliberate, gesture, the building is now anchored into the precipitous site which rapidly falls away beneath. The elevation afforded the (Gr)ancillary Dwelling creates a small home within the treetops, with sweeping uninterrupted views over the existing residence to the landscape beyond.

The (Gr)ancillary Dwelling by Crump Architects is an alternative to elderly care.

Carefully proportioned and positioned glazed openings frame these views from inside, where a restrained and neutral material palette is designed to invite in the sunlight and elements. Here, the ever-changing Hobart weather elements and shift in the seasons become an integral part of the experience of the home, observed from a comfortable vantage point.

The ever-changing weather and seasons of Hobart become an integral part of the experience of the home.

The kitchen’s dark-stained timber cabinetry echoes the exterior cladding.

Dark-stained timber kitchen joinery creates continuity with the exterior cladding, and contrast with the predominantly white interior. Blonde timber floorboards warm the otherwise monochrome palette, and in-built shelving provides a space to display art, objects and personal pieces. These elements create a modest yet elegant home, with clean lines and forms highlighted by the subtle texture of timber.

An entry bridge provides direct access from the street, and a glazed connecting bridge integrates the (Gr)ancillary Dwelling with the house below.

Only in the bathroom is the exceptional restraint ever so slightly interrupted, with black floor and white walls tiled in a striking chevron pattern. Even here, however, the emphasis is on simplicity and clarity, with an understated dark timber vanity and simple round white basin juxtaposed with the tiled pattern.

A striking chevron tile pattern in the bathroom.

A beautifully understated yet striking home, the (Gr)ancillary Dwelling is an exemplar of intergenerational living, and of designing architecture to support every stage of life

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