Leichhardt House
This split level three-bedroom house sits amongst an eclectic array of urban housing in Sydney’s inner west. The concrete, glass and metal clad building follows the contours of its site. Raw but refined internal spaces connect seamlessly with external courtyards to provide a comfortable, sunlit haven for a growing family.
Leichhardt NSW
Dom Bennett, Fiona Blades, Gabriela Reitmaier
Brett Boardman

This house sits amongst an eclectic array of housing in Sydney’s inner west. With a westerly aspect facing a busy local road, the site rises towards the rear. From higher up, a fascinating roofscape of houses and sheds and can be enjoyed to the south.

Rather than applying the default expansive open-plan living solution, this house has been conceived as a group of spaces tailored to accommodate the diverse spatial needs of a young family living in a dense urban environment – finding spaces to play, chill, work, eat, read and eat (both together and individually) both inside and out was a primary focus.

The house is blinkered from the road by the quiet spaces and follows the contours of the site. Five split floor levels are connected by a glazed circulation gallery running along the southern edge, allowing visual connection from the entry through to the garden. All the living and eating spaces are grouped around a peaceful north facing courtyard. The kitchen dining area is the active heart of the house, while the kids rooms sit quietly upstairs, amongst the branches of the mango tree.

From the project’s inception, our client sought confidence and certainty by pursuing approval through the Complying Development process. The opportunity to explore design opportunities unfettered, within a clearly defined framework, delivered a timely result for both our clients, and the neighbourhood.

Environmental responsibility is part of the DNA of all our work. In this case, lower carbon off form concrete structural elements characterise the building façade, while solar technology and proven passive design elements further improve the performance of this home. A long life, low maintenance, low operational energy usage position has been adopted throughout the project.

The material expression of the building is characterised by a celebration of the grain, texture and patina of the building fabric. Off form concrete, charred and clear finished timber, steel cladding and glass are all employed both inside and out. There is no applique.  

True collaboration from the project’s inception through to detailed design, budgeting and construction has resulted in a cleverly conceived, well resolved and faultlessly delivered home.  

Given a brief to explore the possibility of applying the Complying Development Housing Code to our property, Bennett Murada delivered an outstanding design concept that challenged our thinking but provided the best use of space on a small Inner Sydney block. The end result has delivered us an amazing new family home that has exceeded all expectations, whilst not being imposing, yet architecturally beautiful. As a team Bennett Murada were along side us throughout the whole design process and also asssited is during construction by reinforcing our ideas whilst maintaining the foundation of the design. We could not recommend more highly Bennett Murada for any future architectural projects.
Mark O'Connor
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