Plans to build an environmentally friendly, sustainable home in the grounds of a historical house have been given the go ahead by the Planning Inspectorate following a successful appeal. The Pagoda is Grade II* listed and was designed as a garden pavilion for the Duke of Montagu in 1768 by Architect William Chambers, who built both Somerset House and a selection of garden buildings at Kew including the Orangery and the ten-storeyed pagoda.
The new house, The Pavilion, is to be built on a piece of land annexed to The Pagoda after the building of Pagoda Gardens in the 1950s. The design for this very low carbon contemporary house has been in development for two years and involved an expert team of consultants to deliver a building that is extremely sensitive to its location in the conservation area and to the adjacent listed building. The proposal has won the support of English Heritage, the Georgian Group and The Blackheath Society.
“The Pavilion is a completely environmental house, responding to its local and global context and climate. Like William Chambers’ Pagoda, it is a highly contemporary design at the forefront of modern construction and technical know-how and will be built to last at least 200 years.” – Architect Sam Cooper
Working closely with sustainability engineers and arboriculture consultants to ensure the design maximises energy efficiency whilst minimising its impact on the surroundings,
Sam Cooper, director of E2 Architecture + Interiors, aims to push the boundaries of environmental principles in construction and the project will be one of the first private houses to achieve Level 5 on the Code for Sustainable Homes. Using international best practice on low energy building including Passivhaus principles, The Pavilion’s innovative and intelligent design employs super insulation, passive solar design, an earth sheltered lower ground floor, green roofs, rainwater harvesting and ground source heat pumps.
The house is set behind a new garden wall, which returns The Pagoda’s setting to a walled garden similar to the original in the 18th century. The site slopes down three metres towards the south boundary of Pagoda Gardens and the house will be laid out on two split levels with the upper floor in an ‘L’ forming a courtyard over the lower ground roof. By keeping the new house at a very low profile, the views from the upper floors of The Pagoda for which it was built are preserved.
Construction is due to start in May 2011 and complete March 2012. The current owners of The Pagoda, who have restored it from near dereliction to its current glory, will then move into The Pavilion and The Pagoda will be up for sale.
Structural Engineer: Elliott Wood
Environmental Engineer: Hilson Moran
Code Assessor: Twenty Sixteen
Arborculturalist: Quaife Woodlands
Image 1: The Pagoda. Photographed by Rachel Warne
Image 2: Visual of the Pavilion by AVA
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