Tucked neatly behind a weatherboard house in Melbourne’s leafy north-east sits a two-storey modular extension that is bold yet refined and has transformed the way the clients live.

Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

Architect: Modscape
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Year: 2017
Photography: John Madden

Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

From the architect: In need of extra space for their growing family the clients decided to employ a modular solution and extend their home rather than move. The extension is open, filled with natural light and beautifully compliments its leafy suburban location.

Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

A new double-height entrance space has been created in the middle of the house providing a clean separation and demarcation between existing and new. As soon as you walk in the front door, your eye is drawn up to the circular skylight which casts directed light to the open stairs below. To accommodate for the sloping site, the extension is terraced down the block with a slight change in levels between the original house (which has now become the kids domain), the entrance way and the new modular living area. This helps to subtly define different zones, while the same Oak flooring used throughout provides continuity and flow.

Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

Just beyond the new entrance foyer is the heart of the home – a large kitchen. From the outset, the clients’ brief revolved around this space with the arrangement, layout and finishes carefully considered. With ample storage space provided in the butler’s pantry, the kitchen is big enough for the whole family to cook, gather and socialise. The heroes of the space are the large floor-to-ceiling windows that capture clear vistas into the beautifully landscaped backyard and surrounding trees. Cornerless sliding doors in the dining area provide a seamless transition from outside to in - the result is a relaxed, light-filled gathering space with a fantastic outlook and connection to the external spaces.

Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

Sustainably-sourced Blackbutt timber and Colorbond Diversaclad marry in harmony in this home. Yet it’s when the first floor timber form starts to curve and becomes a battened screen that gives way to the house’s personality. The screen is practical too - it provides additional sun shading and privacy ensuring there is no overlooking issues into the neighbour’s backyard. For the adults, the master suite upstairs offers a peaceful haven, cantilevering out to the garden.

Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

The house includes many active and passive systems to ensure that it functions efficiently. Solar passive heating and cross ventilation, high levels of natural light, double glazing with thermal break frames, over insulation (like all of our modular homes), 2,000L rainwater tank, energy efficient lighting, water efficient fixtures and reverse cycle heating and cooling alongside a gas fireplace.

Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

While the Modscape team were busy constructing the extension within the factory the clients were living in the house disruption-free. The clients moved out four weeks prior to the installation date as Modscape coordinated the demolition and site preparation. Installation of the modules occurred in just one day. And three weeks later the Modscape team had completed the works and the clients could put the kettle on.

Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

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Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

Ivanhoe extension by Modscape

Tucked neatly behind a weatherboard house in Melbourne’s leafy north-east sits a two-storey modular extension that is bold yet refined...

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