Fletcher Street Byron Bay

By John Burgess
alterations & additions

Fletcher Street Byron Bay

By: John Burgess Architects

Fletcher Street David Taylor Photographer

How does the project respond to its context, contribute to the public domain for example street or neighbourhood?

Prior to the works the property was in a very poor state of repair, and was surrounded by unkempt vegetation. Following the works, members of the community comment favorably on the contribution to the towns streetscape and architectural history. 

What problems did you have to solve?

The existing structure had suffered significant termite damage and several previous unsympathetic alterations. The timber windows, floors and trim required complete removal.  No original architectural records were available and Heritage restrictions were imposed particularly in relation to the roof form.

The building was located within a flood prone zone and disabled access and facilities were required. 

What was the contribution of others, including engineers, landscape architects, artists, builders and other specialists to the outcome?

The engineer provided invaluable assistance with how the original structure could be maintained whilst receiving additional loading and building elements. The builder ensured a complex rework, was handled in a flexible yet orderly and controlled manner. The landscape consultant was able to create a rear garden that looks far more established that its age and the client had the vision and determination to see a dilapidated building transform into a positive contribution to the towns built fabric.

How would you describe the value of design in relation to the cost of the project?

Fletcher Street has immediately become somewhat of a landmark building in Byron Bay and has been received warmly by the community. The project budget escalated as new issues arose and in parallel the client saw the potential of the building and the brief expanded. The property has proven to be both a financial and architectural success.

What are some important sustainability aspects of the project?

The re-use of the existing built form, recycling of existing building materials, such as using floor boards as wall lining and a reception counter, sit along side improvements in thermal performance by increased cross ventilation and natural light and the addition of insulation and ceiling fans.

What do you consider to be the benefits of the project for the client, users and the community?

The incorporation of contemporary additions- particularly to the roof line and exposing traditional construction methods and recycling existing materials have all contributed to a successful work that proves the retention and reuse of a historic building can provide benefits to owners, users and the broader community.