25-27 Dublin Street Lane South, Edinburgh




ARCHITECTURE: Residential - Multi unit


DS Architecture


This project on the north side of Dublin Street Lane South and located with the New Town Conservation Area and World Heritage Site has seen the creation of two separate 3 bedroom dwellings, each over 3 storeys on a very tight and technically demanding site. Formerly occupied by redundant outbuildings and a makeshift car park, the gap site offered an opportunity to fill in and contribute towards an eclectic mix of mews style properties already on the lane.

The design of the houses had to consider the scale and material of those existing adjacent properties whilst also remaining subservient to the larger townhouse structures immediately to the west. Being in such close proximity to the rear windows of many of the properties within the townhouses on Dublin Street, special attention and consideration to detail was required to avoid risk of overlooking and being overlooked by neighbouring properties.

The response was to utilise the significant slope on the site and create a lower basement level, unseen from Dublin Street Lane South, to maximise the potential of each dwelling. The technical demands of this approach to ensure that the structural integrity of the retaining wall to Dublin Street Lane was maintained in turn affected the internal layout of the building.

Presenting two storeys to the Lane, the focus was to locate the communal living spaces on the upper level, both to make best use of the aspect and natural light facing south, but also to ensure a level of privacy from street level. On the ground and lower levels, the more private bedroom spaces were concentrated to the rear, with those on the lower level having access to private courtyard gardens.

To further ensure privacy, hooded surrounds were designed to the rear facing windows to protect views to and from the adjacent townhouses.

While traditional in form and use of material, particular emphasis was placed on introducing contemporary detailing and large openings, particularly to the south facing principal elevation, to offer a contemporary take on the treatment of traditional mews elevations. Alongside a traditional palette of stone, roughcast render and slate roof, Accoya timber cladding and louvres, alu-clad windows, exposed steel and zinc cladding to the window surrounds contribute towards a more progressive approach to mews design.

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