Mobile House: Isle of Skye
Located on the Isle of Skye, this mobile micro home prototype was developed as a low cost, thermally efficient, mobile house, designed for the rural landscape.
The Client’s initial brief was for a ‘small but not tiny’ house on the site. However, after discovering that the ground conditions on the site were poor and would not support traditional foundations, a ‘mobile house’ concept was developed.
The house contains three main spaces, which are open to the apex, to provide a feeling of space, light and height. Each is divided by a deep storage wall, containing storage or other functions. The three spaces flow together, creating a greater feeling of space and light throughout the building.
Externally, the building is clad in a mixture of black standing seam zinc and untreated Siberian larch cladding, emulating those materials commonly found within the rural landscape. Both external and internal materials were considered in terms of longevity, re-use, maintenance and environmental impact.
Once complete, the building was transported across the Skye landscape, to the site and lifted into position. In the future the building can be removed from site and travel to a new location, where its narrative will continue.
Photographs: David Barbour
Area: 30m² Completion: Autumn 2019・ Client: Private
RIAS: Award for Architecture 2021
Scottish Design Award: Shortlisted
GIA Architecture Award: Shortlisted
Located in the ground floor of a converted sandstone villa within the Pollokshields’ Conservation Area, this project created a light, open plan kitchen forming a new central hub of a family home This was achieved by readjusting the focus from the front shared garden to the private rear garden and re-planning the internal circulation through out the ground floor. The new full height zinc dormer creates a modern intervention between the two-storey villa and the former utilitarian building to the rear, bringing in much need light into the kitchen and forming a new connection to the garden.
The low ceiling in the kitchen was removed, opening the space up to the apex, a new roof light was added to bring further light into the rear of the kitchen. Work included insulating the walls, floor and ceiling of the new space and constructing a new acoustic and fire separation wall between the existing house and neighbouring property.
The material palette both internally and externally was kept simple and robust.
Photographs: David Barbour
Area: 50m² Completion: Summer 2018・ Client: Private
Awards: GIA Awards 2019: Small Works: Commendation
Garden House: Dumfries
Located in a mature garden, the new house is formed from four brick clad volumes, which create private garden spaces and courtyards in the ‘in between’ spaces. We are now progressing with the construction drawings and hope to commence on site in January 2021
Area 175sqm Construction expected: January 2021 Private: Client
Plot 3 Bantaskin Street
Ann Nisbet Studio have been appointed by a private client to prepare proposals for a two bedroom home as part of the Bantaskin Street Self Build Pilot. Glasgow City Council are undertaking a ‘self build’ pilot project adjacent to the Forth and Clyde Canal Locks in Maryhill, Glasgow. The city hope to adopt this approach to various brownfield and vacant sites around the city.
Size: 95sqm Commence on site: 2020 Client: Private
Bantaskin Project: Shortlisted for RTPI Planning Award
Dundashill Custom Build Housing
Ann Nisbet Studio were invited by Igloo Regeneration along with five other Glasgow architecture practices to design a terrace house for a proposed development in Dundashill, in the north of Glasgow.
The proposal was for a custom build housing solution for the Dundashill area, in partnership with Scottish Canals, Igloo Regeneration and CCG, with off-site production and construction by CCG.
Ann Nisbet Studio were asked to take part in the Architectural Fringe Festival’s Re Types Exhibition and explore adaptive re-purposing of an imagined existing building or structure. The studio’s project explores ideas relating to rejuvenating and re purposing Scotland’s abandoned coastal swimming pools and comments on local democracy, land ownership, social isolation and collective bathing.
Date Completed:May 2019 Client: ArchiFringe
Newhouse of Auchengree: North Ayrshire
The new house is located within North Ayrshire, an equal distance between Dalry and Beith, within the Garnock Valley. The site is a plateau at the top of a slight incline and raised from the surrounding agricultural fields. This elevated position gives the building wonderful views over the North Ayrshire Landscape, however it has little natural shelter and is very exposed to the elements. Strong South-Westerly winds can make being outdoors on the site quite uncomfortable.In response to the site and conditions, the functions of the house are contained within a cluster of building forms, which draw on the traditional groupings of agricultural farm buildings and steadings in the surrounding North Ayrshire Landscape. A two storey element, a one storey linear element and an outbuilding form a cluster around a three sided courtyard. The buildings draw on the form and proportions of traditional rural North Ayrshire Architecture. As with traditional local buildings and agricultural buildings, the roofs on the proposed house are symmetrical with a traditional pitch on all the main parts of the building.
The roofs and walls of the building are clad in zinc. This material choice provides a contemporary, quality exterior that references the local rural agricultural buildings. The choice of material also draws on North Ayrshire’s tradition of industry and agriculture working harmoniously in the landscape and looks at referencing the steel and iron foundry’s, which were once located in the Garnock Valley.
The proposed building is approached via the existing access, which continues through the building into the internal protected courtyard. The pend creates a pause space between the wider landscape and the intimate internal courtyard. The large barn doors can be closed to provide both privacy and security as well as a small micro climate via an indoor/outdoor space, which extends the seasonal use of the courtyard and provides a sheltered outdoor space even in the most severe weather.
Columbkille: Isle of Arran
Ann Nisbet Studio were appointed as Architects to design a house, outbuilding and studio on a rural site, on the Isle of Arran. The site is located out with the local development plan, in an area designated as countryside and was therefore submitted for planning via North Ayrshire’s ‘Single House In The Countryside’ Planning guidance.
The house is located on the former site of an historic Clachan and more recently a series of farm buildings. The new house is located within the stone ruins of the former dwellings, emulating the form, proportions and story of the former buildings in a contemporary way.
Due to Commence on site: February 2020 Client: Private
Sealbh House, Tomatin
Sealbh House is situated in the rural area of Tomatin, in Strathdearn close to Inverness and enjoys panoramic views of the Cairngorms and the River Findhorn. The site is located in the Soilshan wood in the remnants of a small holding, which still contained a workers cottage/bothy. To the East of the site lies the railway line and the A9 road and to the west lies the River Findhorn and the village of Tomatin.
In response to the local vernacular, the building has a narrow plan, allowing light from both aspects. The upper storey of the building over hangs the building and is clad in vertical larch rain screen. The lower storey is clad in rendered block and forms a buffer between the building and the A9 road that lies to the East. Expansive windows run the length of the west elevation and wrap around to the North and South, opening up the building to the view and the outdoor environment. The clients Ronnie and Rhoann are keen cooks and enjoy entertaining so a main focus of the design was a large kitchen, pantry and dining area. The house is heated via a ground source heat pump and MVHR system along with a wood burning stove.
Area 180sqm Client: Private
The Ghost of Water Row, Govan
Blurring the boundary between architecture and research-based, site-specific art, the Ghost of Water Row is an example of architecture’s capacity to provide cultural and historical commentary. On 5 November 2012, celebrating the 100th anniversary of Govan joining Glasgow, the Ghost of Water Row stood for one night on the footprint of houses that once flanked the old route to the river. The project celebrated the historical importance of Water Row in terms of Govan’s links to the river through its form, while also referencing its past industry in its fabric. At the ghost and at related events held on that night including film and procession, visitors engaged with the past and were challenged to think about the evolving built environment of Govan and their own sense of identity in relation to the place.
The Ghost is a distillation of four buildings that sat on Water Row between 1700 and 1912. It draws upon the proportions and nature of what was the Ferry Inn and weavers cottages. Water Row consisted of a number of such buildings which sat in a gentle relationship to what was first a natural crossing or fording point of the river and later a sandstone slipway, now buried, offering flush access to the water. It was designed to appear in the dark and disappear in the daylight. The temporary pavilion is made of pale Scottish spruce and patterned lace of pure cotton; the latter reflecting a time when Govan was dominated by the weaving industry. Govan’s hand loom weavers ceased in early 1900 to make way for shipbuilding. The pattern of the lace on the Ghost was taken from Flemish trade on the River Clyde. It is known as “Guirlandes” (garlands). The pattern was moved from hand looming to mechanised looming and remains in production by MYB textiles in Ayrshire.
The Ghost of Water Row was built as part of a community engagement project and coincided with commemorative celebrations for the late Glaswegian sculptor George Wylie. 100 visitors participated in a lantern procession which was intended to evoke the ancient route to the river and the crossing. The visitors were led behind a question mark made by George Wylie from Govan Old church to the ghost, whereupon the ghost was used as a heritage engagement tool. (Wylie’s public artworks made statements and asked questions about the past and future of Clydeside, so his symbol was seen to be a fitting banner for the evening’s events.)
The project won a prestigious RIAS Architecture Award and has been shortlisted for the Arts and Business Scotland Awards and Andrew Doolan Prize.
Lesley Riddoch commented, “I suspect we have just witnessed the controversial award of the night. As I understand it this project was initiated by the architects and has helped unite its community. In my view that’s one of the things architects are uniquely placed to do. I suspect that is what prompted the judges to recognise this extraordinary project.”
The project was developed in collaboration with Andrew McAvoy of www.andrewmcavoy.co.uk through the firm of Edo Architecture, other collaborators included Joshua Brown, MYB Textiles and Fablevision. The project was generously supported by BSW Timber and Arts and Business Scotland.
Rural Barn House
Ann Nisbet Studio was commissioned to design a new rural house on the site of an existing dilapidated corrugated barn near Fort William in the West Coast Highlands. The site is located next to an existing white house on an elevated position, on a functioning croft, over looking Locheil.
It was important that the new building was kept low in the landscape and subservient to the existing white house; To achieve this the new house references the former agricultural shed, is designed on a single level and is asymmetrical in form, rising towards the rear of the site.
The new three bedroom house is clad in timber and aluminium, referencing two of the main industries of the Lochaber area. There are a number of external covered areas that allow the clients to sit outside and enjoy the view, while being sheltered from the elements.
The house has solar panels for hot water and is heated via a ground source heat pump and wood burning stove.
Area 160sqm Due to Commence on site: Autumn 2020 Client: Private
Locheil House: Lochaber
We were commissioned to design a new rural house on a croft in the West Coast Highlands. The site has incredible views over Locheil towards Ben Nevis, but also has several houses located in close proximity. Part of the design brief was to focus the building on the views, while retaining privacy and avoiding being over looked.
The new houses draws on the form and proportions of the former township dwellings and the traditional barns found in Lochaber.
The new three bedroom house is clad in timber and Aluminium that reference two of the main industries of the area. The house has two external covered areas, which allow the clients to sit outside and enjoy the view of the loch and mountains, while being sheltered from the elements and retaining their privacy.
Everybody’s House was a a community engagement project, which formed part of the Albert Drive Project. The project was developed in collaboration with Andrew McAvoy of www.andrewmcavoy.co.uk through the firm of Edo Architecture, commissioned by the Tramway and Glas(s) Performance for the Albert Drive Project 2013.
Stance Cottage renovation
Stance cottage is situated on the old drovers route from Fort William to the south. The drovers would stop in Bridge of Orchy and pay to ‘stance’ their cattle/sheep in the stance below the cottage. Over the last 150 years a shed or barn has continuously stood beside the cottage. These have been demolished and re-constructed several times since the cottage was built, and each have been used for many different functions, including the storage of hay and livestock. In recent years it’s been used as a store by the roads department, home to a classic car enthusiast and a training space for a local boxer. The existing shed was not only beautiful but contained an interesting narrative about the history of the site. It was decided that the story and tradition of the shed should continue to evolve.
The new extension would be designed within the existing footprint of the shed, and emulate its size and proportions, however this time it’s use was to be a contemporary extension to the cottage. The extension consisted of a horizontal clad connection – which contains the lobby, bathroom and kitchen – and the main shed form containing an open plan dining and living space – open to the apex – with a corner window over looking the River Orchy. Large glazed sliders open the living spaces up to the north, towards Glencoe and a Lone Rowan tree grows through the larch deck – kept due to the client’s superstitions.
The extension is timber frame construction, clad in both horizontal and vertical Scottish Larch, which was oiled black. The main extension is roofed in corrugated black steel, with the connecting flat roof being in alwitra – both in keeping with the original shed. The west gable of the extension is wrapped in a dry stonewall, which continues into the garden.
8 Marchhall Crescent is located over the top two floors of a traditional stone building in Prestonfield, Edinburgh. Access is via an internal staircase on the east elevation. An important aspect of the design brief was to provide both a visible entrance and a flexible garden room, connecting the house to the rear walled garden. The new extension provides a lobby, a pause space before ascending the stairs, a double height living space opens up towards the south facing garden, maximising solar gain and providing a much needed connection with the outdoors. *Project carried out while Principal at Dualchas Building Design.
The bright red door and aluminium canopy allows the entrance to be easily identified to visitors and passersby.
The Architectural Installation was a collaborative project between Ann Nisbet and award winning artist Patricia Cain. It was designed and constructed for the Drawing (on) Riverside Exhibition at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, in Glasgow in 2011
The installation draws on processes, techniques and construction methods employed on the River Clyde both past and present. Shipbuilding methods were used in the construction and development of the piece.
In 2015, the installation was moved to the Scottish Maritime Museum in Irvine, where it forms part of the museum’s permanent art collection.
The project was generously sponsored by Ferguson Shipyards, Arts and Business Scotland, Paterson Timber, Elmwood Construction, Rheinzink, Varla UK and Galgael.
(C) Ann Nisbet