A charming addition.

This early 20th century house had been extended and altered many times before, and each alteration seemed to have concentrated on a particular requirement or area, often to the detriment of the house as a whole. What was required was a holistic approach to improve the overall layout, whilst providing some additional accommodation and enhancing “kerb appeal”. The house had some attractive features created by architects already and it was important not to lose sight of these in our proposals. It is fair to say that our initial proposals encouraged our clients to raise their expectations and together we came up with the adopted scheme. By carefully crafting the design, whilst keeping a careful eye on the practical and the budget constraints, the project was carried through to completion with a minimum of fuss.

The end result has produced a most beautiful house, retaining its charm, improving its poise and creating the additional space our clients required. Often it is the requirement of a client for more space that triggers our involvement but, we can achieve so much more with a house than just adding space given the right ‘tools’ so to speak.

Before outside    After outside

 

Written by Tony Keller – Building Tectonics Ltd.

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Somewhere to be loud.

Our client wanted a space to allow his growing family to relax and get away from it all. Somewhere they could go and potentially make some noise, or just make a mess, whatever they wanted to do, without disturbing the rest of the family. We had to create a room in which the adults could relax and the kids could play.

Before.

Before outside garage

As you can see from the photographs we agreed upon a garage conversion, the garage roof was lifted to create the room. With this type of project it is essential to plan the interior with care so that it links with the existing house in a satisfactory way.

After.

After outside garage     After inside garage

Over garage extensions can be ideal as music or games rooms. It’s just a nice place to go and relax. Although over garage conversions can be an ideal room to add a room away from the house for mess or noise, you won’t see many in Bedford as in Victorian times, cars weren’t really around yet, so what need would they have for a garage? However, you would probably have more of a chance of seeing a garage conversion in Milton Keynes.

Written by Tony Keller – Building Tectonics Ltd.

Room for the family.

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Many modern families now require additional space adjacent to the kitchen, this is what the Collins family wanted. This sort of space is often called a “family room” and can be a totally separate room, or an adjoining space (as with this project), or it could be fully integrated into the kitchen. Regardless of the actual layout, in essence they reflect the need for the family to share a space so that the adults can get on with their tasks and also supervise the children. Many families also use this space for entertaining guests as well, thus dispensing with the traditional dining room altogether, or reserving it for very special occasions.

Whatever your needs, Building Tectonics will try to find a solution as we did here for the Collins family.

Written by Tony Keller – Building Tectonics Ltd.

A new lounge space.

One of our clients and his family already had a very pleasant house prior to getting any work done to it, but he required more room. It was essential that the new lounge area connected with the large rear garden and that it gave the feeling of spaciousness. An existing extension had to be demolished to create the space which was needed for the new extension.

A fair amount of careful thought was put into the arrangement upstairs to make the most of the additional area and produce aesthetically pleasing spaces. The stairs to an earlier loft conversion were altered to greatly improve access and create a better landing area.

The loft over the new extension was also utilized and once connected with the earlier loft conversion, formed a great play room come study area.

Sometimes the enlargement of a house can be the catalyst to allow improvement to existing spaces, as was proved in this case.

Untitled

Written by Tony Keller – Building Tectonics Ltd.

Lofty spaces.

A loft conversion can often be the answer to a growing families needs. It can provide that extra bedroom or study space, or a dedicated room for a hobby you may be interested in, but don’t have the space to pursue. They can also be a good source for natural lighting from several different directions, as they can have skylights and dorm windows built in, helping you to save some money on those pesky electricity bills.

These types of conversions are very demanding from a design point of view and need to be thought out very thoroughly prior to commencement.

This is an example of a loft conversion we worked on for a client.

These are the “before” pictures.

Before inside         Beforeoutside

And the “after”…

After outside  After inside

 

Written by Tony Keller – Building Tectonics Ltd.

Tecton Centre refurbishment.

As you may, or may not know, we actually altered the building we are based at in Fenny Stratford – The Tecton Centre. It was previously The Salvation Army Hall, which was built in 1887. Many years later it became a store and workshop for an upholstery company but gradually fell into a state of disrepair. As with many old buildings, a beneficial use has to be found before anyone will invest in refurbishment.

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We formulated a scheme to create an open plan studio, primarily for Building Tectonics, and also a purpose made art gallery display space. There was also room for other companies thus producing the necessary revenue to make the project financially viable. The local planning authority refused to give planning approval for the scheme but fortunately the Government Planning Inspectorate upheld an appeal, and so after many wasted months, work commenced on the refurbishment.

Art Gallery

In 2006 Building Tectonics Moved in. Subsequently many start-up companies benefited from the beautiful environment and flexible arrangements that the Tecton Centre has to offer and in 2010 we were proud to host our first Art Exhibition. Building Tectonics Ltd are pleased to share this great space with others who can appreciate good design.

Written by Jade Turney – Building Tectonics Ltd.

Converted: It was a farmhouse, it’s not now.

In 1997 Building Tectonics designed the alterations of this derelict, 17th Century grade 2 listed building in Fenny Stratford (just outside Bletchley) to form it into 3 commercial units below and 3 flats over. Previously architects had obtained planning permission for the conversion of this unit into 6 dwellings, but this was considered uneconomic.

Having worked on listed buildings before, our general philosophy is to understand the existing structure, and where possible work with it – This is very much close to the heart of the Tectonic philosophy.

59AYL DSC00430

 

In the case of the 59 Aylesbury Street project, it had been built as a farmhouse, its timber frame being organized in 3 bays. Creating 3 commercial units below and 3 flats over meant there only really had to be minor adjustments as very little had to be done to the timber frame structure itself. This pleased the historic building officer and was an economic and safe solution to the refurbishment.

Stairs after refurbishment

Building Tectonics project managed this to the completion on time and on budget. The flats and commercial units remain very popular to this day and are always occupied.

Written by Tony Keller – Building Tectonics Ltd.

Victorian extension – Bringing new things to an old classic

Like many Victorian houses, what this home offered in charm and atmosphere it lacked in living & family space adjacent to the kitchen. This was a problem which needed resolving via an applicable extension.

Before

We designed an extension that included folding sliding doors to open the interior space to the garden a little, as well as adding light to the rooms. A small utility space was also provided to hide away the less visually attractive clutter.

DSC03521  DSC03523

 

Written by Tony Keller – Building Tectonics Ltd.

Family Centre – NCH Action for Children

We were commissioned to build a family centre for an organisation called Action For Children, and so the new Greenleys Family Centre in Milton Keynes was opened in June 2000.

The new building had to be designed to fulfil a number of roles. It had to provide a “drop-in facility” for adults and children in a similar way to a local community centre. With play areas both inside and out, and kitchen facilities. The building had a more serious side too, as counselling rooms and administrative office space were also required.

It was an essential requirement that in addition to meeting the various users needs, it had to give a relaxed non-institutional vibe. Budgetary considerations dictated a very compact and efficient layout with a “no frills” building. Nonetheless by careful design we managed to create an interesting and functional building. Our philosophy of making a virtue out of necessity means that even the building fabric can be used to enliven an otherwise mundane building.

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The organisation of the spaces was difficult in that the orientation, direction of access and garden resulted in North facing rooms. To provide at least a degree of natural sunlight, a tower was introduced that illuminates the centre of the building. The tower improves the roof scape externally but, even more importantly also creates a “stack effect” driven ventilation system. Generally, renewable resources and a green agenda were at the forefront of the design.

The building was delivered on time and on budget.

 

tower

 

Written by Tony Keller – Building Tectonics Ltd.