Franklin Road is rich with traditional villa construction and is one of Auckland’s iconic character streets. The character and development of the street allows for the dwelling frontage to be set as far forward to the boundary as possible bringing the villa into the forefront of the streetscape. This allows these small compact sites to maximise the rear landscape areas as much as possible. There were previous tweaks made to the existing character aspects of the villa which detracted from it’s original charm. The traditional front inviting porch had been closed in for extra bedroom space, the colours were dark and faded. It left us with a very uninviting front elevation. The rear of the villa and the old lean-to extension had seen better days with the foundations sagging and the cladding rotting away to water damage. The clients however, were very excited about breathing life back into the villa. The goal was to reinstate the front character porch and create a lighter, more inviting front elevation that enhanced the street scape. This was made slightly tricky by the additional request of having room for a small parking space under the front porch, without detracting from the character. The 4 bedrooms would remain at the front part of the original villa, with the wide hallway stepping down to a new lean-to addition at the back. Due to the small compact nature of the sites in Ponsonby, emphasis was put into privacy and light. The rear was south facing, and there wasn’t much access to light on the east and west. A design decision was made to incorporate a large single pane skylight which flowed on from the traditional hallway. As you enter the villa the skylight provides hints of light streaming into the rear, drawing you through the home towards the open space. The large opening doors at the rear of the space provides the sought-after connection to the outdoor landscape area.