A City Home Grows Without Gobbling Up its Garden

A City Home Grows Without Gobbling Up its Garden

By Dwell and Luke Hopping / Photos by Adrien Williams
An 1885 house in Montreal dips a little into its backyard for spare space.

The Plateau Mont-Royal neighborhood is populated with charming but dated homes like the Hotel-de-Ville residence. To add extra room, architecture firm Microclimat Architecture plotted a T-shaped extension in the backyard. The architects' advance was blocked by a poplar tree, around which they designed a skinny glass volume topped with a cantilevered mezzanine. 

Determined not to destroy the home's limited connection to nature, Microclimat extended the addition only as far as a mature poplar tree in the rear garden. The cantilevered mezzanine is wedged between its trunk and boughs. 


The expansion creates a narrow intermediary space between the yard and existing home. This sliver contains a light steel staircase and two new sun rooms for reading.

The mezzanine houses the new master bedroom, which juts out into the embrace of the poplar tree. 

A new terrace, accessible from the private quarters, reshuffles outdoor space lost during construction onto the roof. 


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