Cramond Housing

2006 / Cramond Edinburgh

  1. view into court
  2. gateway to courtyards
  3. garden
  4. courtyard
  5. street view

The strategy for the AMA suburban housing development was to reverse the pattern of the normal UK housing estate, which consists of individual houses surrounded by front, back and side gardens, which are then arranged around suburban roads. At Cramond the lead was taken from traditional Edinburgh developments such as the Grange or Murrayfield, where roads are bounded by continuous garden walls, and frequently there is an ambiguity between garden wall and building. The front garden was abolished for each house type, allowing all the available space to be put into a private walled garden to the rear. All the roads are lined with garden walls, each of which engages directly with the walls of the individual houses creating this ambiguity between wall and house. Houses are then combined in various formats to form recognizable thresholds and places. For example the smaller of the houses are paired to form “gatehouses” to larger house types. L shaped house are combined to form private courtyards approached through a relatively narrow threshold. In this way we hope that the experience of suburban housing will be transformed with recognizable space making and thresholds. The five houses each have common features and materials. These are a low eaves height giving an impression of a 1.5 storey house, an identical staircase tower which also marks the entrance and in the case of larger house types, an entrance courtyard of gravel or setts for parking and visitor parking.

The first phase was completed in 2006.