As you might expect the run up to Christmas 2017 was hectic. The company closes for two weeks over the holiday period and while that is mostly a good thing we often have clients houses in bits so we have to make sure that everyone is in a good place before we can stop. At the same time we have to plan for restarting again after the holidays and start planning the year ahead.
The point being, as I already mentioned, is that it is a hectic time and one consequence of that was that the blog got neglected.
So here we are, it's a new year, it all starts again including our blog. You may remember the chief reason for the blog is to chart one project from start to completion (and maybe beyond) of a new build house we are constructing on Tipperlinn Road in Edinburgh for architects, Richard Murphy Architects (RMA) and clients Mr & Mrs Shaw.
The blog so far has taken us through the process of clearing and excavating the site, laying drainage and pouring concrete in the form of foundations, concrete slabs and concrete retaining walls. The next step in the process was to build the walls themselves.
The site of the house is bounded on two sides by two neighbouring houses to the South and to the East and by Stable Lane and Tipperlinn Road to the North and West. The boundary between the two roads takes the form of an existing rubble stone wall rising in excess of 4m high on the lane side. There was a dilapidated wooden fence between the neighbours to the East and we had built a temporary boundary between the site and the original house to the South when the garden was divided.
The new walls were to be built of new split faced stone on the eastern side. Because the new house was sunk below existing ground levels at this point the height of the walling on the east side rose only 2m above the existing garden level and appears to be a garden wall from that perspective. We were also careful to preserve the existing planting so that overall there is very little evidence of the new house from this neighbours garden.
The original house on Morningside Place shares a 22m long boundary wall with the new house and it was decided to finish this wall in white render to match the finish of the old house and to maximise the dispersion of light in the reduced garden plan.
The remaining two walls were the existing stone rubble garden walls to the streets and these were very carefully rebuilt where we had removed them to open up the access to the site. As stunning as the new house may be if people walk past once all is complete and fail to notice that the house is actually there at all then the architects will be pleased.