Johanna Molineus Architects

Portland Road

London, 2018

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Portland Road

London, 2018

The project is a mid-terrace house with a small garden to the rear. The building is located in a conservation area in Notting Hill, London.

While today we would associate Portland Road’s townhouses with highly sought after property, the simple fact is that beyond their front doors, these homes rarely live up to the grandeur which their frontages proclaim. Their 160-year-old structures prevent them from reaching the standards of twenty-first-century living. On receiving the commission from the owner of the house JMA set out to fix that.

The client’s brief was to modernise the existing family house and provide additional amenity space. Improving the benefits of natural light, fresh air and the sense of openness was a must.

During our firsts visits with the clients, walking around the property, we discovered original features and particuliarities that became key elements in the proposal. A shared brief emerged with the client and a neutral contemporary language for the works was adopted. The aim was to find the difficult and delicate balance of historical & contemporary. In a natural way, the modernisation of the house also offered an opportunity to emphasise the original character of the property.

Once on the drawing board, we explored the constraints and opportunities of the site. The property underwent extensive internal alterations that included the reconfiguration of the layout, a new rear extension, a new single-storey basement underneath the existing building and garden as well as a new roof terrace.

The intent was to open this narrow property to the rear garden and introduce a new horizontal dimension to the living areas. To achieve this, a double height frameless sliding door was proposed adjacent to an internal double height void. These dual elements of glazing and void connect the lower and upper ground floors directly with the rear garden, creating a seamless threshold allowing the internal rooms to flow effortlessly towards the garden without interruption.

In the new basement level, the insertion of a lightwell ensures fresh air and natural light flood the space contradicting the assumptions of how subterranean spaces are experienced. This excavated lightwell, in conjunction with the internal double height void and glazing, introduces a new dramatic vertical dimension to the property.

At the top of the house, the roof terrace discovers new views of the neighbourhood and anchors this family house in the metropolis of London.

Portland Road

London, 2018

+ More info– Less info

Portland Road

London, 2018

While today we would associate Portland Road’s townhouses with highly sought after property, the simple fact is that beyond their front doors, these homes rarely live up to the grandeur which their frontages proclaim. Their 160-year-old structures prevent them from reaching the standards of twenty-first-century living. On receiving the commission from the owner of the house JMA set out to fix that.

The project is a mid-terrace house with a small garden to the rear. The building is located in a conservation area in Notting Hill, London. The client wanted their property and its small garden to be reborn as a modern residential dwelling. The client’s brief was to modernise the existing family house and provide additional amenity space. Improving the benefits of natural light, fresh air and the sense of openness.

Walking around the property during our first visit, we discovered original features and particularities that became key elements in the proposal. A shared brief emerged with the client and a neutral contemporary language for the works was adopted. The aim was to find the difficult and delicate balance of historical and contemporary. In a natural way, the modernisation of the house also offered an opportunity to emphasise the original character of the property.

Keeping only the original frontage, JMA redesigned the structure of the mid-terrace townhouse. The property underwent extensive internal alterations, including the reconfiguration of the layout, a new rear extension, a new single-storey basement underneath the existing building, a new garden and a new roof terrace.

The design intent was to open up this narrow property to the rear garden and introduce a new vertical dimension to the living areas creating a seamless threshold allowing the light to flow effortlessly into each space.

To achieve this, thick slabs of oak and sheets of glass form a decisively modern open-riser staircase through which pours a waterfall of natural light from a large, sliding roof light. To emphasise the verticality of the space even further ventilation gaps appear where fixtures and walls meet floors and ceilings, giving the impression that those elements are suspended in space and that surfaces extend ad infinitum. Nowhere is this sense of verticality more prevalent than the exposed white-painted brick wall which spans roof to basement. At the top of the house, the roof terrace discovers new views of the neighbourhood and anchors this new modern home in the metropolis of London.

In the new basement level, the insertion of walk-on glass allows for light to penetrate the space, contradicting assumptions of how subterranean spaces are experienced. These layers of glass, in conjunction with the full height glazed sliding doors to each room, introduce a new dramatic dimension to the property.

The Old House

Cotswolds, 2019

The Old House

Cotswolds, 2019

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London, 2014

Roland Gardens

London, 2014

Roland Way

London, 2014

Roland Way

London, 2014

Vicarage Nassim

London, 2010

Vicarage Nassim

London, 2010

Coulson Street

London, 2006

Coulson Street

London, 2006

Onslow Square

London, 2016

Onslow Square

London, 2016

Eaton Square

London, 2015

Eaton Square

London, 2015

Eaton Place

London, 2015

Eaton Place

London, 2015

Fortune Green Road

London, 2013

Fortune Green Road

London, 2013

Portland Road

London, 2015

Portland Road

London, 2015