This 1830 mansion with an 1880s addition occupies a dominant corner on Gore Street, Perth’s Main Street. Universal accessibility and building code upgrades for exiting and other life safety requirements, as well as redefining circulation patterns to improve the use and function were required to accommodate this use. The addition is characterized by historically sympathetic but contemporary architectural language inserted at the intersection between the 1830s and 1880s portions of the home.
The original house, built in 1830 for Perth’s first lawyer and Family Compact member Daniel McMartin, was designed in an ambitious American Federal Style. Even the bricks were imported through wilderness areas from the United States in an effort to please McMartin’s American wife. It has very solid and cubic proportions which are lent a delightful lightness by the fine masonry detailing, double-flank chimneys and rooftop cupola with twin lanterns. The design of the modern addition, with its solid cubic form and light upper detailing, and its reference without pandering to the chimneys, fully supports the original composition.
Together with the original house (partial conservation) and the 1880’s addition (a doctor’s office for McMartin’s son-in-law which was extensively renovated and reinterpreted as part of this project), the new addition creates a tripartite story of the building’s evolution. The spirit of the original is respected and embodied in the new.
MTBA also undertook a detailed energy conservation study as part of this project.