Milford Residence

Private Residence | Residential | Location: Milford, Auckland | Client: MDS

A major renovation that transformed a tired seaside home in Milford, on Auckland’s North Shore, was a Gold Reserve winner in the Registered Master Builders Auckland/Northland Awards 2016, in the Renovation over $500,000 category. MSC Consulting took a key role in the structural design.

The remarkable transformation of the three-level 454m2 Milford residence could be more accurately described as a reincarnation, as only fragments of the existing timber framing remain of the former home. Most of the home’s internal walls were demolished and all the external walls facing the sea were removed. The engineering design was complicated by the need to use all the existing foundation to take the new walls, while at the same time rearranging the internal walls to create the required new layout. New structural beams were installed to support a more contemporary open design. Exterior plaster cladding was replaced with cedar weatherboards, and new decks on both levels were added to provide views across the beach and out to the Hauraki Gulf.

MSC also designed a feature spiral staircase, the most challenging part of the project from a structural design perspective. The walls below the existing staircase were removed to create the large ground floor open space, so the new steel structure to support the staircase had to be hidden within the floor joist space. All the floor joists and beams adjacent to the staircase were reconstructed to create an elegant and functionally strong staircase. The deck canopy facing the sea also required careful design. All the existing support posts were removed but with the roof structure to remain, MSC engineers designed a cantilevered steel structure to support the existing roof. As the external walls had also been removed, new steel portal frames were used in this area for bracing.

“When homeowners are undertaking extensive renovations such as these, the involvement of structural engineers is essential. Our experience working with architects and designers in commercial buildings transfers well to ensuring a successful and stylish  outcome to what are major structural challenges on a domestic scale,” says MSC Consulting’s Director Tom Donald.