John McAuley Architecture

Soulsby II

‘Gippsland Pod House’
Ellaswood, East Gippsland


The Soulsby residence is located on a beautiful Hilltop in Ellaswood, with 270 degree views to the mountains, lakes and flood plains of East Gippsland.  The challenge for this project was to take best advantage of this incredible site whilst meeting the long term requirements of a growing family.

Extensive site investigations resulted in a series of key sight lines being identified, then concept studies focussed on aligning the major parts of the house to these views.  The resultant design consists of four interconnected ‘pods’, each one aligned to a different feature of the site.  Designing the building in this way enabled the house to be built using simple timber truss construction one ‘pod’ at a time – a critical consideration for the clients who were building the house themselves on weekends.

Breaking down the overall scale of the house into a series of smaller elements also ensures that the building is very energy efficient.  The restrained width of each pod in concert with operable highlight windows ensures excellent natural cross ventilation as well as ample natural light to all rooms.

A simple material palette was adopted with each ‘pod’ or change in axis expressed with a different material.  This ensures all building forms are clearly and simply defined and sit comfortably next to one another.  Extensive outdoor decking on both the east and west sides of the house ensures seamless indoor / outdoor transition, resulting in year round enjoyment of this incredible site.

Photographer: Andrew Lecky

John McAuley Architecture
17 Nash Road
Bunyip VIC 3815
t: (03) 5629 5481
m: 0408 106 844
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