Located in the desirable Tupper School District of Halifax, this house displayed great potential for the young family who had recently purchased the property. Over the decades, this residence had been the subject of a number of poorly executed renovations. To address this, our team stripped the layers of vinyl and wood cladding back to the original shiplap sheathing. We then rebuilt the exterior of the home with the intention of creating a project that was sustainable in both design and construction practices.

Project Name: Elm House
Studio Name: Peter Braithwaite Studio
Location: Halifax, Canada
Photography: Julian Parkinson

Elm House by Peter Braithwaite Studio -Sheet1
Rear View ©Julian Parkinson

Our primary design intention was to create functional responses to the existing building, by utilizing modern design and construction practices, without disrespecting the historic Halifax neighbourhood in which the house resided. This was accomplished by maintaining the original gable form of the building and adding carefully design additions that refined the functional use of the structure. A new entry porch was added, which provided the home owners with a panoramic view of the beautiful tree lined street. This entry porch also contains a new eight foot wide staircase that was thoughtfully designed to encourage and facilitate the gathering of the local neighbours on summer evenings.

Elm House by Peter Braithwaite Studio -Sheet2
Side View ©Julian Parkinson

Similarly, the rear of the house was redesigned around ideas of gathering and functional storage. Being an avid gardening family, an eight foot tall storage volume was added to the rear of the building to house garden tools, as well the children’s bicycles and toys. Through the use of seamlessly integrated doors, that were clad in the same material as the walls, this storage volume also acts as a functional visual and audio bookend that helps minimize any disturbance to the neighbours.

Elm House by Peter Braithwaite Studio -Sheet3
Front Facade ©Julian Parkinson

Using only the highest quality products, the envelope of this house was rebuilt with wood as the number one material choice. The main house volume was clad in Maibec’s Rabbited Bevel siding with the EM Plus installation system and the front and rear accent volumes were clad in locally sourced rough sawn Hemlock. We feel the result is a strikingly contemporary residence with a material palette and formal response that shows respect to the neighbourhood in which it resides.


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