Grand Designs Australia

Episode One: Structural Gymnastics

Discover some of the standout, unique design elements from The Graceville Container House featured in episode 1 of Grand Designs Australia, Series 5.

Grand Designs Inspirations takes you on a journey, exploring some of the unique, hidden and emerging design elements that appear in some of the buildings featured on the show. In the series you will discover how these concepts have influenced architectural design in the Australian building landscape.

Alternative Building Products Can Create A Structural Gymnastics 

By combining a use of alternative building materials, The Graceville Container House is built out of shipping containers. It uses a combination of recycled materials including timber, railway sleepers and recycled Tasmanian Oak. The result is a structure that has clean lines and quality finishes that enhance its appearance. The glass maximises natural light and a mix of materials, including the signature containers, cleverly creates an industrial chic effect.

Enhancing Definition

The containers can give clarity of structure by using materials that enhance definition.
In the Beaumaris house, materials used including zinc, spotted gum timber and masonry wrapped around a steel frame provide additional outline.

Enhancing Space

The Beaumaris house uses the strategy to split the container-like building into two elements, a south facing cantilevered zinc-clad living element and a two-story north facing masonry bedroom element. These two elements pulled apart with a circulation zone and the roof prised over these areas allows the north sun to penetrate into the living zones. The building elements are further pulled apart internally with first floor bridges spanning between them.

Establishing Context

The Beaumaris building has an awareness of the history of the suburb, with the design complemented by the context of the 1950s and 1960s.

Repurposing Alternative Building Materials

The Melbourne playground demonstrates an additional way of repurposing alternative building materials. The discarded shipping containers have been used in their raw form in keeping with the repurposed environmental ethos behind the concept. The

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