Monday, August 15, 2011

omar gandhi: cedar in three textures

This summer we had the pleasure of meeting Omar Gandhi, a talented young architect, who just two years ago set up practice in Halifax. Our region has experienced a "brain gain" with Omar; while born in Toronto and raised in Brampton, fate has brought him to Halifax.
During his training and work experience, Omar has had the opportunity to work with some of Canada's leading architects, including Bruce Kuwabara,Marianne McKenna, Mitchell Hall, Andrew Dyke, John Peterson, Lucy Timbers, Glenn MacMullin, Paulo Rocha, Kevin Bridgman, Bruce Mau and, most recently here in Halifax, Brian MacKay-Lyons. Recently Omar had the occasion to design an addition for a family in Liverpool, as shown above. In expanding the interior space, the main objective was to open the house on the “private” side towards the south. This orientation brought views of the Mersey River into frame allowing as much sunlight in as possible during the winter months and shade in the summer months. The project aspired to preserve the original house and maintain the existing street presence, while in the contemporary addition on the back of the house they would use local materials and traditional building technologies.
The existing house is re-cladded in local Eastern White cedar shingles. The new portion is cladded in two widths of Eastern White cedar boards. The clients wanted their house to age/silver in the landscape naturally over time, so the cedar is left natural, as is the galvanized steel for the roof.

Inside, the expansion continues the need for material integrity; interior millwork and concrete are left natural, as seen here in the living room, which combines the work space to allow for increased family interaction. The main focus of this room is the great outdoors, framed beautifully in the long row of windows. The furniture shown in this room includes the Canadian designed Baxter sofa and Truss chair, and the German now! by hülsta coffee table, all from Attica.
For more information:
design: Omar Gandhi, 902.222.3886,
photography: Greg Richardson
contractor: Trunnells and Tenons Construction Ltd.
structural: Andrea Doncaster