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"Cloud House" billows from unassuming Edwardian home

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June 26, 2012

An unassuming Edwardian house in an equally unassuming Melbourne suburb has undergone a re...

An unassuming Edwardian house in an equally unassuming Melbourne suburb has undergone a remarkable cloud-shaped extension

Image Gallery (24 images)

As home extensions go, this eye-catching extruded cloud is certainly something different. Completed earlier this year, the "Cloud House," as it is now known, is the result of both the renovation and extension of what was once a traditional double-fronted Edwardian house in the Fitzroy North suburb of Melbourne Australia. It's now anything but.

The projects architects, McBridge Charles Ryan (MCR), describe the cloud itself as the final of a series of "distinct and unexpected episodes" which follow the unassuming Edwardian front, which still looks much as it did when the house was originally built nearly one hundred years ago (the Edwardian architectural period actually continues a little beyond the death of Edward VII in 1910).

Though the original house has been renovated and redecorated (note the carpets), it's in the extension where things begin to get interesting. Nested within the cloud-shaped extension is a red cube: the Cloud House's new kitchen.

Nested within the cloud-shaped extension is a red cube: the Cloud House's new kitchen

This cube-kitchen has the effect of extending the visual funnel through the property , so that visitors won't see the cloud itself until they're more or less standing in it.

The cloud extension itself is sort of part-dining room, part-conservatory. The obvious visual talking point of the development, the cloud form creates a multi-barrel vaulted ceiling, which, with its wooden finish, looks really rather good.

Given the time it takes architectural projects to come to fruition, we'll put the resembla...

Though that vast expanse of glazing would often be a point of concern, the fact that it faces south (in the southern hemisphere) mitigates the problem of a greenhouse effect from direct sunlight. That being the case, there's reason to hope that the vents in the floor shown in the interior shots are for heating only, and not a combined heating and cooling system. Green architecture should avoid mechanized air conditioning as far as humanly possible. In domestic architecture, that should be almost always.

As for the cloud itself it's hard to say whether it's inspired more by the weather or the rise of cloud computing. Given the time it takes architectural projects to come to fruition, we'll put the resemblance of this particular form to the logo of a certain fruity cloud-based service down to coincidence.

Source: McBride Charles Ryan, via Arch Daily

About the Author
James Holloway James lives in East London where he punctuates endless tea drinking with freelance writing and meteorological angst. Unlocking Every Extend Extra Extreme’s “Master of Extreme” achievement was the fourth proudest moment of his life.   All articles by James Holloway
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4 Comments

There's a word for this sort of thing. Remuddling. At some time in the future, someone is going to have to scrap all this junk off that formerly nice antique home.

"Green architecture should avoid mechanized air conditioning as far as humanly possible. In domestic architecture, that should be almost always."

So we can either stink like unwashed hippies in the summer or use more water bathing to stay clean and free of offensive smells.

Gregg Eshelman
27th June, 2012 @ 10:09 pm PDT

Gregg, you summed up my opinions nicely. Thank you.

kuryus
28th June, 2012 @ 11:18 am PDT

**So we can either stink like unwashed hippies in the summer or use more water bathing to stay clean and free of offensive smells. **

I renovated a house in Fitzroy to passive solar principles in the mid 80's. No artificial heating or cooling in that part of the house and it was warm in winter and cool in summer. Easy really if you know what you are doing.

apprenticeearthwiz
28th June, 2012 @ 06:55 pm PDT

Labelling stuff "green" is horse pucky. Efficiency and aesthetics are more than sufficient measures and goals.

Brian H
4th July, 2012 @ 07:31 pm PDT
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