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A Home in Harmony: 360 Architecture

When the client engaged 360 Architecture to build a house on their site on the lower Cashmere slopes, they bought with them a number of interesting challenges.


Photographer Simon Devitt


The size of the site was quite restricted, the soil was very unstable and in poor condition, and the height to which the house could be built was restricted so as to not block any neighbouring views. The build also needed to be completed within a fixed budget, so there was no margin for error.

Undaunted by the challenge, Rob Bosma and his team responded to the brief using a composition of simple, uncluttered block forms, interlinked and cut open to expose the interior spaces to the adjacent reserve and views beyond. The main living area and master bedroom with ensuite are elevated above a sunken garage. The house is dressed in high quality cedar cladding, a versatile material which has a natural warmth and richness of colour helping to integrate the building into its natural surroundings.

During the building and design process, optimising conditions for the best natural ventilation and comfort conditions were always kept in mind. This meant designing the build to optimise orientation towards the sun whilst ensuring there is adequate shading for the hottest summer months, and paying careful attention to the positioning of glazed surfaces.

Generous openings were provided to exhaust summer heat rather than relying on mechanical cooling. Therefore, the house remains comfortable in all seasons with heating only required on sunless winter days. The 360 Architecture team has managed to create something truly unique, aesthetically beautiful and in harmony with its surroundings. For the proud new owners of Broad Oaks, all the boxes have been ticked and their new home is truly a joy to live in.


Simon Devitt
International Photographer of Architecture
Phone 021 680 959


Designing for Community: Allfrey + South

City housing initiatives that promote a sense of community are sparking growing interest. As architect Craig South explains, such housing developments can take many different forms.



Earlier this year, we launched our ArchiChat Group to provide an informal way for people to meet us and share our love of architecture. It has generated a lot of lively conversation, especially around the topic of community-based housing. Many find the idea really appealing because it connects with the New Zealand dream of small, friendly neighbourhoods where children can play and grow up feeling safe and cared for, and where adults can socialise much more freely than they do in today’s suburbs. The vision also embodies a more sustainable, less wasteful way of life through sharing facilities and common spaces.

In Christchurch, a good example of this is the Peterborough Housing Co-operative where a trust is creating a new pocket neighbourhood. It has been fascinating to lead the design of this medium density development over the past three years. On track to be completed in 2020 are 14 single and multi-storey residences and a ‘Common House’, clustered around a large central outdoor space. Ranging from smaller one-bedroom homes and studios to three- and four-bedroom homes, the houses will all be different and suit a range of occupant typologies.

As with any other project, the key to good design has been to understand the values and objectives of the client. In this case, the goal was to create houses that would be private while also encouraging social interaction with neighbours in the shared courtyard and the ‘Common House’. It will be a very child-friendly place with plenty of room for safe play in the outdoors and with cars accommodated separately in off-street parking to one side. There are limited entry points to the development itself, encouraging interaction between occupants as they cross paths.

Shared facilities include a laundry at each end of the central courtyard. A ‘Common House’ will be the community’s social hub, comprising a guest room, kitchen, spacious lounge, kids’ space, study space and a teens’ loft. The concept of a development such as this is to combine private housing with a sense of belonging to something bigger. The options for community housing are fairly limitless and need not simply replicate what has been designed in this particular instance. Other people might approach such a project with a completely different set of values and priorities that would, in turn, shape the final outcome.

Our work with the Peterborough Housing Co-operative has certainly sparked a lot of interest and enquiry on how the concept might be applied to other similar housing developments. We are really passionate about the co-housing concept and know that it can be successful in many different forms. We have had many in-depth discussions in the office; could we live in a co-housing community? Who would our neighbours be? What shared facilities and amenities would work best for us?

Do you think you could live in a co-housing community? If you are interested in setting up a similar development or want to learn more about co-housing, we want to get to know you! We would like to take ArchiChat ‘on the move’ and meet with groups who have a specific interest in co-housing, so please get in touch so we can bring ArchiChat to you!




Architectural Alchemy

Architectural Alchemy

Little by little and project by project, Christchurch’s ever-evolving urban landscape is taking form. No longer the quaint post-Victoria spot it once was, it is rising from the rubble with a dynamic new edge.


Architectural Alchemy


The emerging Christchurch will be an overlay of the new upon the old – one that preserves heritage while embracing modernity. The result will be a 21st-century ‘Garden City’ that provides a new way of working and living in a city within a contemporary and vibrant environment. It is perhaps best exemplified by the raft of awards earned on the local level at the recent ADNZ | Resene Architectural Design Awards, one of the most coveted architecture awards in the country. Cymon Allfrey of Cymon Allfrey Architects has taken out yet another prestigious architecture award for ‘The Family Bach’ when it was named the supreme winner.

The ADNZ award win means The Family Bach has received recognition at five separate architecture awards programmes in 2018 – making it one of the most recognised designs in the country ever. Set in the idyllic Hanmer Springs, it was created as a retreat for Cymon’s own family to enjoy and ADNZ judges described the playful collection of three hovering buildings as a place for making lasting memories. The Family Bach was not the only winner on the night from the Canterbury region. Out of nine projects recognised with ADNZ | Resene Architectural Design Awards in New Zealand – four were from Canterbury.

The other winners were ‘Latimer’ by Kelly Rush of Krush Architecture, ‘Redcliff Village Library’ by Greg Young of Young Architects and ‘Glandovey Home’ by Cymon Allfrey of Cymon Allfrey Architects Ltd. Redcliffs Village Library – designed by Greg Young of Young Architects won the Commercial/Industrial Architectural Design Award. The brief was to deliver a small, fit for purpose, community hub facility that supports both the voluntary library function and a multipurpose community space. Cymon Allfrey had another winning home, this time in the Residential New Home over 300m2 Architectural Design Award. A residential home on Glandovey Road with a soaring pitched roof that runs the length of the house, Glandovey Home was praised by judges for being an “individualist” but at the same time sitting nicely with its surrounds.

Kelly Rush of Krush Architecture received the Residential Multi-Unit Dwelling Architectural Design Award for a modern design of three large, high-spec townhouses located in Christchurch’s central city. Judges were complimentary of Rush for creating a sense of privacy in a busy urban setting. Architectural Designers New Zealand CEO, Astrid Andersen, says the four Canterbury projects were worthy winners in a hotly contested awards season. “With home owners taking greater creative risks and putting more trust in their designers and architects – the resulting architecture is more exciting, interesting and bold,” she says.

“Cymon Allfrey’s bach design is an example of this. Cymon was free to design a home that was brave, adventurous and a work of art. We only hope that this trend continues and more of our members are given the opportunity to push the boat out and let their creativity take sail.”