College Cross Conversion
How to extend a basement into a contemporary layer filled with light, air and views as co-equal partners? We transformed a dark, cavernous space within a listed Georgian terrace in collaboration with Alan Conisbee, Structural Engineers and with the enthusiastic consent of Islington’s Conservation Team.
Our design objectives were double edged – how to express a clear distinction between new and old? Simultaneously blur the boundaries between both? We approached the project in terms of landscape design rather than a basement conversion and were particularly sensitive to the importance of texture, surface, and connectivity to communicate individuality in each of the interior spaces and to liberate the flow of natural light. We exploited the gradient of the garden, the subtle interplay of rough and smooth materials, we combined rawness with delicacy, light with shade thereby enabling each to contribute a visual and tactile identity within the whole.
The glazed extension is set down gracefully and integrates the internal and external spaces. The staircase acts as a vertical and visual connection – a unifying link to the upward/downward flow of old and new.