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Client / NWMCWC
Budget / Confidential
Stage / RIBA C

Winner Invited Competition 2008

The West Ardhu housing project comprises the design of a new settlement of 15 affordable houses near the village of Dervaig on the Isle of Mull, NW Scotland.

The project combines masterplanning with the design of robust house types suitable for the unique and sensitive rural location. The development has been treated as a series of groups, or microcommunities, allowing an informal and community-focused plan, with a character specific to the site.

The architectural language developed for the West Ardhu housing draws strongly on the principles inherent in traditional Scottish architecture. Choices made with regard to form, massing and materials are based on an understanding and sensitivity towards the local rural vernacular, using contemporary construction methods to achieve a strong, well-detailed architecture.

We propose a simple palette of materials and clear, well-proportioned forms, providing striking design at a very affordable cost. Timber from areas of spruce plantation cleared for the development will be processed locally into cladding panels for the houses.