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Scully Street

Before Photos

Construction Progress Photos

This project involved alterations, a major addition and a full renovation to an existing house set on a granite hill that had inadequate vehicle access. Some challenge.

This project offered a high degree of difficulty from the outset as there was no vehicle access to the site and the first challenge was to remove the existing stone retaining wall. The site was steep and the logistics of deliveries and cranage played a major role in programming construction. This was especially evident when the existing house was raised for the new extension.

Nixon Build owns their own specialised building lifting equipment and expertise and can therefore ensure that existing buildings can be preserved after calculating the estimated deflection expected and adjust the equipment accordingly. In this manner distortion of the existing building is minimised. Often you don’t know what view you have until you have the building raised and in position. Although nobody enjoys variations, there are times where the benefits far outweigh the cost and this proved to be one such case. The owners were delighted to discover the extended views gained by elevating an additional 600mm. Naturally there were complexities associated with these changes but we were in a position to consult with our engineers, negotiate setbacks, extension of stairs etc. The owners on this project had a great sense of design and balance and understood what worked and didn’t and it was a combination of skills that contributed to a spectacular finish.

Making a difficult site work is the difference between extraordinary and ordinary. Early on in this project we discovered the neighbouring properties pool encroached onto this site by approx. 600mm making it very difficult to achieve the desirable radiuses for motor vehicle access. The problem resulted in a remedy which resulted in a much better space under the building by moving two centre posts. This was achieved by installing 2 x 360PFC’s providing an 8m opening to allow the vehicles to point and turn on exit. It also provided a sensational uninterrupted space under the house.

Unlike a new build workmanship and craftsmanship is a must to survive in the renovation world. The art is to transform an old building often in today’s standards non-functional space, into a space that best satisfies the modern open plan living. The objective is optimising functionality without losing the charm of what the building once represented.

The finish throughout the extension maintains the old Queenslander charm with great workmanship and craftsmanship. The extension looks as though it belongs with the original build. Maintaining the high ceiling throughout the rear extension that includes the kitchen, dining, outdoor / indoor living areas, main bedroom, walk in robe, ensuite and main bathroom. The extended living space off the western side of the central living area features a raked ceiling, raking down to interface with louver gallery sets running the full length of the building, wrapping around the front on the southern side.

The building is fully air conditioned. However, the site catches the prevailing breezes and this house is cool every day, all day. We worked through the North Queensland summer as we do every year, but everyone had a request to work at this site knowing it offered a level of thermal comfort.

The attention to detail can only be appreciated by a site inspection. Although the photographs present the property well, the real detail is appreciated at close inspection. The kitchen and the bathroom designs are spectacular. The main bathroom features a freestanding bathtub, separate shower, full width grate drains, toilet suite with in wall cisterns, wall tiles over 3m to the ceiling and amazing glass screens.

Similarly the lighting throughout is simple and stylish. The beautiful polished Tasmanian oak floors, match well with the original wide pine boards in the original building.

The external of the old building was completely stripped and recladded and naturally continued the timber chamfer board look throughout. Traditional timber balustrade and 90x40mm kwilla top rail delineate the railings and stairs. Aesthetically the finishing touch outside I believe is the valance apron wrapping around under the perimeter under the floor. This feature blends well with the neighbouring houses and offers a real Queensland finish.

The street appeal is fantastic. Looking at the property the front retaining wall defines the boundary and affords the property both a yard and also definition. The driveway is a radiused exposed honey stone aggregate drive wrapping around the radius of the retaining wall providing vehicle and pedestrian access.

Value for money I believe is often in the eyes of the beholders, there are many features and finishes not detailed on the drawings that Nixon Build have absorbed in the build costs. There are often unforeseen items that are included without variations in order to have a great outcome. We believe there is great value for money and the owners have an official bank valuation that supports this.

The site has been well utilised as part of this project and the rear of the block which was not part of our scope has potential for a great landscaping project in the future.

The West End hill side architecture has a diverse range of buildings and this property is clearly one of the most prominent. The building is in great company, it is an area that has been redeveloped in recent years. The south eastern aspect that this property enjoys offers many benefits, particularly the absence of solar intrusion and with the benefit of beautiful sunrises. Because the western sun is behind the hill, you don’t experience the late afternoon sun.

Nixon Build is proud to be associated with the transformation that has occurred with this project.


West End
Renovations,Award Winning Projects


2013 Master Builders Awards - Regional Award Winner

2013 HIA - Townsville Regional Renovation/Addition Project of the Year

2014 HIA CSR NQ Awards - North QLD Renovation/Addition Project Winner

2013 Master Builders Awards - House Renovation/Remodelling Project $276,000 - $575,000

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