Steffen Welsch Architects took Parkville Connect House in Melbourne, Australia as an opportunity to think creatively about a common problem.  Their glass atrium offers a unique approach to bringing light and living space into older homes, which often lack these two modern essentials.  As an added bonus, the design uses passive design principles for efficient ventilation.

The reenvisioned layout has a communal family space in the glazed infill.  The room is filled with light and provides easy movement between cooking and eating.  Similarly, glazed sliding doors create a natural flow to the home’s sun-filled courtyard.

The design team also took into account future needs in their update.  While the central room encourages family time, a studio on the far side of the home allows a bit more distance and independence.  It makes a perfect as in-law suite or teenager space as family needs evolve.

Aesthetically, the addition of a glass atrium creates a striking contrast to the older brick exterior.  The dissonance emphasizes the home and community’s traditional building styles. (Photography by Rhiannon Slatter Photography, and information courtesy of Steffen Welsch Architects)