Independent Registered, Qualified Architects in Hitchin, Hertfordshire and Gloucester
Specialists in New Home Architecture based in Hitchin, Hertfordshire
We are specialist architects for new homes in Hitchin. We have many examples of residential architecture projects we’ve completed in Hertfordshire. If you are looking for any inspiration for your new house, please get in touch and we’d be happy to help.
Total refurbishments and new homes
In 2016 CROE was appointed to try and gain planning permission on a dilapidated site to replace a run-down bungalow with a modern and contemporary home for a new Developer. Although the site and building were in clear need of developing, it had a chequered planning history with previous applications being refused.
We analysed the previous applications and their reports at why these applications had failed and set about designing a scheme that counted the arguments for refusal. In doing so we found two key elements that would help create a coherent argument for planning approval. First providing some active frontage for the pedestrian footpath that ran in front of the property and second, designing a scheme that would minimise the impact on the neighbouring property.
To reduce the impact on the neighbouring building we positioned a single storey double garage between the neighbouring property and the main bulk of the house. To reduce its impact further we lowered the level of the house from the garage level by 1.5 meters, this brought the roof level of the garage roughly in line with the bungalow which enabled us to build 2 storeys deeper into the site. By developing the scheme in this way, it allowed us to create a 5-bed house with a floor area of over 3000 square foot.
To maintain an active frontage on the pathway, the front elevation was treated with tall glazing in the gable end. This design feature also enabled us to create vaulted ceilings in all bedrooms throughout the first floor, making the spaces feel much brighter and bigger than had they been standard low flat ceilings.
After successfully gaining planning permission in 2017 the house was later completed in 2018. CROE Architects was instructed to provide construction details for the tender and building process and was kept on board during the construction phase.
In 2017 CROE Architects was appointed to take over a project of a bungalow refurbishment. The client had achieved planning permission through a previous architect, but due to the drawing style was unsure what was designed and how it would look when built. Through our computer modelling software we revealed what the scheme would look like in 3D. This informed the client that they were not getting a contemporary design as first thought, and decided then on a complete redesign.
By using a combination of 3D computer software we was able to convey the design and concept of our scheme using 3D visuals rather than the traditional 2D line drawings.
The original bungalow was a dark and drab 1960’s 3 bedroom home, in major need of TLC. Our proposal was to replace the garage with a new side extension, and introduce a new front extension that allowed us to remodel the interior while also making it light and spacious.
The side extension created a large kitchen diner with access to a kitchen terrace overlooking the countryside below, while the front extension allowed us to create a large lounge again with great views. This front extension allowed us to re-organise the front entrance with a cantilevered canopy providing a strong visual element that helps define the main entrance of the home while also provide shelter from the elements on the lounge terrace. All other rooms were re-organised to provide 4 double bedrooms, two bathrooms and one dressing area while we also created a snug / office of the main living space.
After having the scheme signed off by the clients, planning permission was achieved in early 2018, we were instructed to provide all necessary building information and was retained during the building process, and was completed in the summer of 2020.
This homes design and layout now matches its marvellous setting!
Letty Green, Hertfordshire
In 2016, CROE was appointed to investigate the potential of an existing house in Hertfordshire situated in the Green Belt. We looked at the development potential of extensions to the existing house, against a new build.
After completing the survey and feasibility study on the two options, we were further appointed to develop a scheme to maximise the floor space of the existing house. Extensions within the Green Belt can be difficult to achieve, the requirements change slightly between different local authorities, but generally the floor space cannot be extended above 50% of the original dwelling.
The original house had a complicated layout due to the previous extensions and resulted in very dark, uncomfortable spaces. Our proposal was to knock down the poorly built extensions and replace them with a double storey rear extension while also completely changing the layout internally. This resulted in 4 good size bedrooms, two with en-suites and a big family bathroom on the first floor with a large family room to the rear of the ground floor, with utility room access, and a snug and office to the front of the house. We gave the front of house a facelift, replacing the windows with modern grey windows, delineating the front entrance with new render surround and glass canopy while the back of the house received the modern timber clad extension.
This house has been transformed into a modern and airy home.
CROE was instructed on all stages of the project, and we were able to hand it over to our happy clients at the end of 2018.