Infill designed for aging-in-place and respect for site
The Bedford Park House in Toronto is a 3,100 sq. ft. infill which fits aesthetically with the established neighbourhood, and protects two rare century-old magnolia trees in the front and a Japanese maple tree in the back.
BY ALEX TEDESCO
The house was designed to offer large views of the outdoors yet be energy efficient; to allow the residents to grow old in [age-in-place]; and to create a basement apartment for rental income or for independent use by a family member.
We knit the house within the neighbourhood by matching its set back, scale, and window height and alignment with that of the adjacent homes. We simplified outdoor maintenance by limiting the size of the lawn and using self-sustaining plants.
Advanced systems such as geothermal heating and convective cooling were invisibly woven into the design, creating a healthy and sustainable environment while maintaining the atmosphere of a conventional Bedford Park home.
To design for “aging-in-place” we forecasted different scenarios about what that meant physically and psychologically. We did “day in the life” modelling to understand all the various barrier-free requirements that might arise, and this influenced the design of the house especially in the flow of circulation and the size of specific elements including the corridors, door widths, washrooms [design and location of showers, sinks and toilets], and bedrooms.
It also included building the foundation and installing power and conduits for a future elevator next to the stairwell, and simplifying the entry sequence from the driveway and the walkway to the front and side doors.
A highlight of the home, is a feature staircase of welded blackened steel visible from all major arteries in the home, and a tribute to the owner’s family traditions in the welding trade.
Alex Tedesco, BES, BArch, OAA, is a senior Associate at LGA Architectural Partners, www.lga-ap.com .
- PROJECT CREDITS
- Project architect Alex Tedesco
- Project manager Boszko Verity
- Photos Ben Rahn / A-Frame