Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Photos/ Rafael Santa Ana & Megan Paris-Griffiths
This project was conceived with two specific programmatic scenarios in mind – an immediate requirement for an 800sf working artist studio, secure storage, and covered parking space; as well as a future agenda to easily convert the structure into a one-bedroom laneway dwelling. It was designed prior to the City of Vancouver’s Laneway Housing Initiative, and represents an progressive approach to Vancouver’s zoning bylaws.
In the artist studio scenario the finished ‘garage’ is used as a storage space, with large swing doors opening onto the lane for moving large artwork in and out of the studio. In the laneway dwelling scenario the ‘garage’ is converted into a bedroom, and the powder room expands to accommodate an already roughed-in shower.
The main architectural feature is a retractable glass wall that opens to connect the studio / living space to the garden. The glass wall faces south, capturing as much light as possible year-round, while also incorporating a cantilevered overhang to minimize solar gain during the summer months. Vancouver’s temperate climate allows the glass wall to be open throughout most of the year - protected from rain by the cantilevered roof above.