Housing Development of fourteen new townhouses along the seafront promenade.High Point View is a development of fourteen new townhouses, located on a prominent sea front site in the town of Whitley Bay, on the North East coast. It is intended as a high quality contemporary reinterpretation of the traditional townhouse terrace.
In design of individual houses, the basic strategy is to give all properties an open aspect to the sea view. This design principle generates a relatively tall and narrow frontage to each home; a pattern typical of historic coastal and riverfront developments in this region and beyond.
Repetition of the regular Highpoint townhouse elevations creates a clearly defined street frontage as they wrap around the outer edge of the site.
Each individual house is visually delineated by a vertical recess in the brick elevation, which, together with a contemporary two story projecting bay window gives a strong vertical emphasis and traditional visual rhythm to the terrace.
All principal rooms have large areas of full height glazing with full exposure to the sea view.
First floor living rooms have sheltered balconies set back into deep brick recesses within the elevations.
The L shaped building form creates a secondary enclosed courtyard space to the rear. This area hosts parking and servicing elements, together with small rear yards, visually screened from the more public frontage.
Front doors are located along the seafront Promenade and Edwards Road. Free from a sea of cars, these main entrances are accessed via small town gardens which line the street frontage. Set back behind low brick walls and iron railings, these traditional spaces act as an important buffer or transition zone between the public realm and the private residence.
As a counterpoint to the regularity of the houses along the frontage, it is intended that, in time – these gardens will grow and develop with individual occupants to animate the terrace and bring the street to life.
A limited palate of traditional and modern materials has been selected: Red brick, slate roofs and natural timber together with steel, aluminium and glass are employed to create contemporary houses which remain in keeping with the surrounding terrace streetscape.
The terrace is constructed principally in load bearing masonry using a good quality local brick as the defining material. Ibstock's Northern Buff was carefully selected to blend seamlessly with the established housing stock around. This rustic brick is flush pointed in reference to traditional Georgian townhouses nearby, and purposefully contrasted against modern materials and contemporary detailing.
Detail design of the masonry facades was undertaken strictly using brick module sizes with the intention of expressing the weight and solidity of the traditional brick terrace. To this end, all windows and doors are set within deep brick reveals – to emphasise the depth of the load bearing walls. Rainwater pipes are set within the vertical brick demarcation recesses which run down the terrace fronts. Garden walls are deliberately deep and heavy to reinforce a strong sense of private enclosure along the street front.
It is hoped that this mix of vernacular building patterns and contemporary use of this classic material, helps to generate an authentic building which, is both modern and traditional at the same time.