River House is an original house that has been around for generations, and after earthquake damage it was finally rebuilt in 2020 by AW Architects. Located in Christchurch, New Zealand, the house is tucked away in a long driveway lined with established trees opening out onto Wairarapa Stream lies River House. That’s why, this house has a beautiful view by utilizing the unique riverside environment.
As a result, the new home features two distinct, gable roof shapes that are connected via a small glass entrance. The main wing and deck facing the river are above ground on piles to allow potential flood water to flow beneath. The second wing is offset to create a private courtyard and garden facing north. At first glance, this house presents the impression of flowing water into the house, with a hole located between the two forms of the gable roof.
The house with two linear shapes is split with carefully articulated openings to capture the natural surroundings, and to maintain privacy and shade from the sun, a series of sliding shutters is the best solution. Not to forget, cedar cladding and river stone baskets were chosen as part of the architecture. The black steel roof contrasts sharply with the natural cedar, while small concrete wings form the service side of the house. The renovated river house is of a sympathetic scale, displays the site conditions very well and maintains the distinctive qualities of the site.
architects: AW Architects