Elton_house_cover.jpg
Elton_house_cover.jpg

Elton House


North Adelaide

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Elton House


North Adelaide

Industrial Intervention


Elton House

Adapt (1993)

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RAIA Commendation (Recycling) 1993


Over time in the Victorian heart of lower North Adelaide an old bakery had become a two-storey residence. In 1992 the owners of the day asked Tectvs to rework the building into a contemporary home while retaining the defining elements of its historic context.

  Steel detailing contrasts with custom timber panels to create a unique look

Steel detailing contrasts with custom timber panels to create a unique look

The former commercial premises formed an integral component of a group of historic buildings, including the Kentish Arms Hotel that was established in 1848 by John Collard Cocker, an Adelaide cricketer who is credited with the design of the world-renowned Adelaide Oval. A private lane connecting the old bakery to the pub – the Arms was still thriving and largely in its original form – was identified on the original title. The historic streetscape and remaining fabric of the bakery were the important elements for Tectvs to address, as well as the primary considerations for North Adelaide living-noise, privacy and security.


The site was a typically tight historic precinct location; the opportunity for expansion was extremely limited


Tectvs preserved the 'industrial' nature of the building through minimal intervention in the original bakery and the use of traditional industrial typology and materials. It introduced a sawtooth roof and selected timbers, materials and finishes that would carry the industrial theme through the new spaces. The aim was to create a contemporary home that could be easily updated again when required without major intervention in the recycled structure. The opened interior, lit naturally by the south-facing sawtooth roof, looked out into secure courtyards to provide a private connection to the outside world.

The careful design interventions hold aesthetic appeal to this day as a productive way of updating historic buildings with modern design.

  The staircase introduces a bit of theatre to the residence, and reminds visitors of its former industrial life

The staircase introduces a bit of theatre to the residence, and reminds visitors of its former industrial life