Vibe Design Group’s, renovation project, Mercer, uses a bold timber shape to transform the existing house, giving it an undeniable street presence and privacy for the occupants.
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Robert Hamer


The clients purchased an existing run-down home with the intention of transforming it into a bold contemporary styled residence. Unlike their previous home that they described as too stark and cold, they requested a liveable family home with sophistication and warmth.

An undeniable street presence was formed with a striking timber-lined profile that extends along the longest street boundary. The bold tapering shape has the dual purpose of protecting the occupant's privacy and disguising the property's three storeys.

Interior spaces are arranged around a feature timber wall, that cuts through the centerline of the building, bringing the natural warmth of timber into the living spaces. In the children's wing, the vertically battened wall breathes excitement into an otherwise uninteresting hallway.

Although not obvious to the viewer, the transformation used much of the existing structure. The design solution gives the occupants a combination of optimum livability, sustainability and privacy while impacting on the high profile corner site.


Although visually unassuming and unattractive, the existing residence was of sound construction and worthy of part retention and utilisation. The roof of the existing residence was removed and replaced with a two-storey form that straddles the existing brickwork structure below.

Timber framing was integrated with structural steel elements including the use of Hyjoists as floor joists and MGP10 & MGP12 timbers for rafters.

The offset timber shape on the north side was constructed of an engineered steel wall truss with MGP10 battens over and silvertop ash cladding. The internal feature staircase was constructed with fully welded steel tread supports off a concealed stair runner with individual timber treads. The glass balustrade is pin fixed through the ends of the timber treads.


In transforming this residence, Vibe Design Group sought to have an impact on the highly exposed corner site.

The existing roof was replaced with a bold tapering shape clad in silvertop ash timber, that both protects the occupant's privacy and disguises the property's three storeys. The glass sliders that run the length of the north wall are offset 1 metre from the protective floating timber wall. As the shape tapers to the rear of the property more of this glass wall is revealed. Its distance and the height off the glass are specifically calculated to protect from the harsh summer sun and allow warm winter sun to penetrate into the living spaces.

The garage door is finished in a perforated metal, which is also specified for the adjacent pedestrian entry gate. The entry gate is afforded all-weather protection from the timber shape over, and is the property's main access, fitted with an automated intercom system for gate release.


Upon entry, one ascends the stairs and is invited into the primary living area. The central streamlined kitchen is void of handles and inconspicuously incorporates a scullery/butler's pantry. A clear glass splash back gives a sneak peak to the battened timber feature wall beyond.

Windows in the lounge area are given a framed view of the beautiful established trees in the streetscape, while the dining area at the opposite end of the space spills onto the north-facing outdoor entertaining feature. A sliding wall off the dining gives separation to the rumpus/movie room, bedrooms and descending staircase to the garage and laundry below.

A battened blackbutt feature wall disguises doorway access into the bedrooms, bathroom and powder room. The lounge area affords a quiet desk space beneath the floating staircase, and camouflaged access in the continued battened wall to another bedroom. The staircase leads to the upper storey master bedroom, which includes windows at opposing ends of the room. The protected east facing windows provide a beautiful elevated view over the undulating surrounding landscape.


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