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Industrial sheds inform Forest Houses in London by Dallas Pierce Quintero

Architecture studio Dallas Pierce Quintero has completed a cluster of houses in London with sawtooth roofs and corrugated-metal cladding that nod to the site’s former use as a builders’ yard.

The project, named Forest Houses, is located beside Wanstead Flats parkland in Newham and is conceived as a prototype for reimagining unloved brownfield and infill sites.

Aerial view of homes in Newham, London
Dallas Pierce Quintero has completed a cluster of houses in London

It comprises a three-bedroom home, a pair of two-bedroom houses and a one-bedroom residence in a converted shop, all oriented to overlook the nearby park.

Dallas Pierce Quintero adopted an “upside-down” layout for the homes, with ground-floor bedrooms and first-floor living spaces that give access to natural light and views.

Aerial view of the Forest Houses in London by Dallas Pierce Quintero
The Forest Houses have sawtooth roofs and corrugated-metal cladding

“The interlocking buildings have helped reimagine this unloved pocket of space – of which there are many in cities like London – in a way that is space efficient, without compromising on existing amenity space or daylight to neighbouring properties,” co-founder Jonathan Dallas told Dezeen.

The Forest Houses’ bedrooms sit within raised brick plinths that reference the surrounding Victorian terraces and interlock with a series of courtyards enclosed by perforated brickwork.

Sawtooth roofs of Forest Houses in London
Their design references the site’s former use as a builders’ yard

Above, the living, dining and kitchen areas are housed in a series of prefabricated cross-laminated timber (CLT) “pods”, clad externally in corrugated metal informed by the site’s former industrial use.

“In developing our design, we were keen to ensure that the first-floor pods drew inspiration from industrial structures not just in their appearance, but in the efficiency of their construction,” said Dallas.

“Offering a fast yet high-quality solution, the pods were manufactured in panels and then assembled on-site, in less than five days, providing a feasible prototype for brownfield development, which can deliver dense, adaptable urban living,” he added.

Living room with CLT lining designed by Dallas Pierce Quintero
The living rooms are houses in cross-laminated timber pods

The Forest Houses’ interior finishes mirror the external contrast, with exposed blockwork used in the ground-floor bedrooms and exposed CLT in the first-floor pods.

First-floor areas are organised with a kitchen to the rear and living space at the front, benefitting from the additional height of the sawtooth roof and a clerestory window.

The plinth has been topped with a grass roof, blending into the surrounding views while also providing a private outdoor space for the units.

While the smaller openings on the first floor are frosted for privacy, each of the Forest Houses is oriented to allow for a fully-glazed wall at one end overlooking the park.

Bedroom with exposed blockwork walls
Bedrooms sit on the ground floor

Other projects in London that have recently adapted neglected infill sites include a home by Studioshaw, which also used a sawtooth roof form to draw light onto a former garage site.

Parti created a compact housing project within a terrace of Victorian buildings with a palette of robust and affordable materials.

The photography is by French + Tye.

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