Fylde Coast architecture practice Firth will now be using virtual reality (VR) for all its projects following a successful pilot with several select private residence projects.
The most recent project to use the technology was an £800,000 transformation of a residential property in Lytham into a state-of-the-art modern residence.
The Firth team utilised VR tools when working with the client to create the final design, for which the highest quality materials will be used to create a unique, modern home inspired by the woodland surroundings. Work is to complete in early 2020.
Joel Firth, director of Firth Architects, said: “We’ve used the technology increasingly over the past three years and it has proved essential in helping clients visualise their dream home. It’s going to be a hugely influential tool in our business not only because of the ability for clients to almost touch and feel their home but the efficiencies it also brings to streamlining a project.”
The project, which recently secured planning permission, incudes plans for the £800,000 Church Drive conversion focussing on reusing the existing building to reduce the impact on the natural environment, with designs for the super-insulated structure aiming to enhance energy efficiency and lower running costs.
Joel Firth added: “This is a fantastic project, which is really going to showcase how sustainable technology can have a positive impact on the environment. The government set targets for the UK to achieve 15 per cent of its energy consumption from renewable sources by 2020, so making the switch to alternative energy is paramount. As architects we have a responsibility to the environment and an important role to play.”
Special features of the five bedroom, seven bathroom home include the use of a Mechanical Ventilation with Heat Recovery (MVHR) system, a whole house ventilation system that both supplies and extracts air throughout a property, along with a solar array and other renewable technologies.
A lift will be incorporated to provide full accessibility, in addition to a new staircase linking all three floors, while a new timber frame structure with red zinc external finish will wrap over the existing masonry structure.
Joel Firth concluded: “The overall design of the Church Drive house has been inspired by two elements; to reuse and improve the existing building structure, and a new organic element inspired by the natural setting of the site which will wrap over the existing building to frame the property and the stunning views over the estuary. Its contemporary aesthetic aims to reflect the beauty of the setting of the site, whilst creating a truly unique home and we’re looking forward to seeing our vision become a reality.
“We are always on the lookout for projects like this, something which is a bit different and has unusual constraints. It’s wonderful to have the full trust of the client, which allows us the freedom required when working to create such a stunning home.”