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May 8, 2008

Winning Portobello extension combines sleekness and humanity

Remodelling and extending a single-storey cottage in Portobello, Dublin 8, won A2 Architects – run by Peter Carroll and Caomhan Murphy – one of the AAI’s top awards. It is a protected structure and so all new additions crouch behind the late 1800s Victorian façade: all that is left of the original, internally, is the hallway and front room: the deep new extension takes its lead from that square sittingroom. The architects listened to their client – which has resulted in a person-friendly house – and also to their own hearts, so there are borrowings from the house in St Mary’s Lane, Ballsbridge, that Robin Walker designed in 1964, which the architects have admired since their student days; internal courtyards, exposed concrete and ply are just some of the references. Another installation from their past – following trips over the years to Le Corbusier buildings – are the earthy but bold red and green paint colours mixed up by Corb in 1931. That colour scheme is shot through with black, in the form of slate and powder-coated aluminium window surrounds.

The Irish Times

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